West Ham have been clogging up the gossip columns with rumours of big-money signings, but now find themselves on the receiving end of speculation.
According to French website Le 10 Sport, Real Madrid are looking to lure Dimitri Payet away from east London.
The midfielder has had a phenomenal season, receiving a nomination for PFA Player of the Year and scoring 12 times across all competitions.
Moving to one of the biggest sides in the world would have to be an ambition for any footballer, but Payet should think twice about a move to the Bernabeu.
Los Merengues haven’t signed a permanent outfield player as old or older than the 29-year-old since 2010, when Ricardo Carvalho joined from Chelsea.
This seems to suggest that Real don’t view Payet as a long-term option and he may have to settle for limited appearances, with Carvalho only stepping out 50 times in La Liga over three seasons.
Similarly, Premier League stars have a history of struggling when moving to the Madrid outfit, with Cristiano Ronaldo and Luka Modric the most obvious exceptions.
David Beckham had a good first three seasons with Los Blancos, but was cast out of the team during the second half of his final campaign there.
Furthermore, 15 of Michael Owen’s 35 Real appearances came from the bench, despite scoring 47 goals across all competitions in his last two seasons with Liverpool before joining, and was gone within a year.
Jonathan Woodgate and Thomas Gravesen also had to settle for cameo roles, highlighting that achievements in the Premier League mean little to the ten-time European champions.
Breaking into the starting lineup would also be difficult for Payet when you consider the strength Zinedine Zidane already has at his disposal, with Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and company in the squad.
James Rodgriquez, the 2014 World Cup Golden Ball winner, is likely on his way out of the La Liga giants due to being unable to get a game, while Angel Di Maria and Mesut Ozil have also had to depart in order to get more substantial game time over the last three years.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.