Jesse Lingard is in ‘advanced talks’ with newly promoted Nottingham Forest over a move that would reportedly ‘smash’ the club’s wage structure.
In fact, the Hammers have held lengthy negotiations with the player, according The Guardian.
But in a move that has caught many by surprise, Premier League new boys Nottingham Forest have swooped to sign the free agent with a so-called ‘extremely lucrative offer’.
That report from The Guardian has certainly brought to light some fascinating details surrounding the potential deal.
Steve Cooper’s side are ‘expecting’ Lingard to join this summer, with West Ham becoming increasingly frustrated during talks with the player.
As well as questioning whether he really wants to play for them, The Hammers appear to have been put off by Lingard’s hefty wage demands.
The England international is said to be holding out for a £180,000-a-week wage.
David Moyes’ side are reluctant to make those demands become a reality, but Forest are willing to give the former Manchester United midfielder that pay packet to bring him to the City Ground.
Lingard has been targeted the likes of Everton, Newcastle and Tottenham this summer, and earlier this month, the player listened to pitches from two MLS clubs when he visits the United States with his representatives.
But it appears a move to Nottingham Forest is becoming more and more likely ahead of the new campaign.
The biggest factor for Lingard at this stage of his career is regular playing time.
He hopes to break into Gareth Southgate’s 26-man England squad for the World Cup in Qatar this winter, which will, of course, require plenty of first-team minutes.
Thoughts on his potential move to Forest this summer? Is he worth the £180,000-a-week reported?
Let us know in the comments.