West Ham’s wantaway winger Dimitri Payet has reportedly turned down a succession of mammoth offers from the Chinese Super League.
It’s believed that three Chinese outfits, including Hebei China Fortune, are willing to pay the Frenchman £26m a year, equating to £500,000 per week.
But despite seeing a number of Premier League players head east in recent times, Payet wants a return to Marseille, citing family reasons.
The Ligue 1 outfit have made two bids for the 29-year-old, believed to be around £20m, but both have been rejected by the Hammers.
The east Londoners are hoping to hold out for £30m, so it remains to be seen whether Marseille will go that far.
There’s certainly a chance they will, with the club’s uber-wealthy owners keen to get the club back into the top echelons of French football and the Champions League.
Payet wasn’t included in the squad which beat Crystal Palace 3-0 last weekend, and it appears unlikely he will return to the first team anytime soon.
But less than two weeks to go until the January transfer window closes, West Ham must make a decision soon on what to do with their mercurial forward.
Slaven Bilic’s side sit nine points clear of the drop zone, but if they play the rest of the campaign without Payet, they could yet slip into the bottom three.
The Frenchman has directly contributed to nine Premier League goals this term, with two efforts of his own and seven assists.
Next up for the Hammers is a trip north to Middlesbrough.
Buoyed by that victory over Palace, Bilic’s men are 11/5 for another three points, but don’t expect Payet to help them to it, his days of assisting the Hammers are all but over.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing