West Ham and Newcastle retain hope of signing Burnley centre-back James Tarkowski in January, but his high price may see the Hammers accelerate a back-up plan, per multiple reports.
Both the Hammers and Magpies are on the hunt for defensive additions next month. Injuries to Angelo Ogbonna and Kurt Zouma have left David Moyes’ Hammers short in central defence.
Newcastle, meanwhile hold the dubious distinction of conceding the most goals in the Premier League this season.
If West Ham are to achieve their European dreams and Newcastle are to stave off relegation, choosing the right defender to sign in January will be key.
As such, both sides have registered their interest in Burnley’s ever-reliable James Tarkowski.
That’s according to the Sun, who state the Clarets defender is in demand ahead of the winter window.
At 29, Tarkowski would be a signing for the here and now – precisely what the two suitors need.
Tarkowski difficulty prompts alternative West Ham target
His contract expires next summer, meaning January is the last chance Burnley have to cash in before losing him for free in six months’ time. They reportedly held out for £40m when West Ham came calling in 2020. Given his contract status, that figure may now have dropped.
Of course, Tarkowski could pen fresh terms at Turf Moor, but there is little indication that will happen at present. Furthermore, Burnley chairman, Alan Pace, recently acknowledged it will be difficult to retain Tarkowski’s services when speaking to the Daily Express.
However, Burnley’s need is also great with Sean Dyche’s side currently sitting in the bottom three. Losing such a dependable performer could be a killer blow to their survival chances.
Money could talk and no club has greater spending power than Newcastle at present. As such, a second report from the Telegraph highlights West Ham’s alternate plan.
The newspaper stated Moyes has ‘identified Lloyd Kelly’ as his new saviour next month.
The Bournemouth centre-half, 23, has played a pivotal role in the club’ss promotion push this season. Despite a wretched run of recent form, the Cherries won at QPR on Monday to go top of the table again.
Predictably, the Telegraph state the Championship high flyers are reluctant to part ways with Kelly. But as Burnley may find out with Tarkowski and Newcastle, money could talk for Bournemouth and West Ham.
Newcastle perform U-turn over Tottenham deal
Meanwhile, the transfer battle for Tottenham’s Dele Alli has taken a surprising twist after an update regarding Newcastle’s interest in the midfielder came to light.
Newcastle are one of a number of Premier League sides with reported interest in Alli. Indeed, many sides registered an interest when it was revealed Alli would likely be moved on by Spurs.
However, a report from Football Insider states that Eddie Howe’s side no longer want to pursue the midfielder.
They state that Howe wants to strengthen other areas of the Magpies side. As such, holding midfield and the defence will take priority over the signing of Alli.
One look at the Premier League table sheds light on Howe’s thinking. Newcastle have shipped the most goals of all top flight sides this year (41), with only four other teams conceding over 30 thus far.
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