Slaven Bilic is confident that West Ham will complete the signing of Stoke forward Marko Arnautovic this summer, according to the Times.
The newspaper claim that the Hammers are preparing to lodge a third bid for the 6ft 4in front man after having two offers rejected.
The Times report that West Ham are aware their new offer will have to take into account a 20 per cent sell-on clause due to Werder Bremen as part of the £2million transfer that took Arnautovic to Stoke in the summer of 2013.
Nevertheless, it is said that Bilic, the manager of the east London club, is “confident” of completing the capture of the player who has emerged as his top forward target after moves for the likes of Arsenal’s Olivier Giroud and Manchester City’s Kelechi Iheanacho fell flat.
Stoke rejected West Ham’s second offer of £20million earlier this week but the versatile forward, who operates mainly from the left flank, has handed in a transfer request to push through what is now looking increasingly likely to be the club’s record signing.
Anything above £20million would break the current club record, set when Andre Ayew was signed from Swansea last summer for £20.5million.
It would also demolish Stoke’s record sale by some distance with Asmir Begovic’s £8million move to Chelsea in 2015 the highest fee the club have received for one of their players.
Arnautovic, who is contracted to Stoke until 2020, has scored 26 goals and supplied 32 assists in 145 appearances for the club.