Stoke are in talks with West Ham about the possibility of offering Carlton Cole a route back to the Premier League.
Terms have already been agreed between the two clubs, with Stoke believed to have offered an initial £4m, with a further £2m in add-ons to potentially be paid in the future.
Cole may have only scored five Premier League goals as West Ham were relegated last season, but his assets could be a perfect fit to Stoke’s direct style.
The England international will provide a physical presence in attack and is certainly a danger when relying on his instincts in the penalty box of the opposition.
Stoke chairman Peter Coates told BBC Radio Stoke: “We’ve agreed terms with them [West Ham], it’s now just seeing where we get with the player and agent, and that’s still a live issue.
“We’re in the messy business of trying to reach agreement, I’m not in any doubt that he’d want to come to Stoke, I don’t think that’s a problem at all.”
Coates also stated that Stoke have been long-term admirers of Cole and that this is not the first time that they have made an approach to sign him.
More striking options will definitely not go amiss at Stoke as they prepare for another season in the Premier League and a European adventure in the Europa League after reaching the FA Cup final.
The cup competitions are likely to prove Stoke’s best chance of success this season, with Cole battling with Kenwyne Jones, Jonathan Walters and Ricardo Fuller for a starting spot in attack.
Stoke’s betting odds are 50/1 to go one better than last season and win the FA Cup, while it is 33/1 that they win the Carling Cup.