West Ham have held talks with Paris Saint Germain’s Hugo Ekitike.
That’s according to Foot Mercato, who have reported that a positive meeting took place between the Irons’ technical director, Tim Steidten, and PSG’s Luis Campos.
Everton were said to be very keen on signing Ekitike earlier this month but their interest seems to be have quietened as they continue their pursuit of Wilfried Gnonto.
Ekitike joined PSG on a permanent deal for around €35 million (£29.8m) only two months ago and has already been told he is surplus to requirements in the French capital.
After netting three goals and providing four assists in Ligue 1 last season, the 21-year-old is unlikely to get regular football this time round and will now look for a new adventure.
Fabrizio Romano claimed last week that the Toffees had already made a loan-to-buy offer to PSG, however they have so far failed to come to an agreement. The French giants want at least the €35m they paid for him and Everton are unable to match their valuation.
MORE EVERTON STORIES
West Ham could take pole position in race for Hugo Ekitike
Sean Dyche’s side could now be about to lose out on Ekitike if West Ham continue their own pursuit. The report claims that their talks were ‘frank and very constructive’, with the player’s representatives very receptive to the Irons’ pitch.
David Moyes’ side are also able to meet the salary demands of Ekitike and there is no doubt they would be able to cough up the €35m following Declan Rice’s departure.
Ekitike has also been linked with Nottingham Forest, Juventus and Bayer Leverkusen this summer.
Everton seem unlikely to make any further offer for the youngster given his price tag, while they appear to have a number of alternatives on their shortlist.
Wilfried Gnonto still looks to be the main target in that position, though a move for the Italian is looking increasingly unlikely as Leeds United continue to refuse the sale of their star man.