West Ham United insider @ExWHUemployee has been sharing some insight regarding the east London club’s reported interest in signing Chelsea defender Kurt Zouma this summer.
This comes after Ex co-hosted a recent edition of The West Ham Way Podcast, where he spoke about a range of topics concerning David Moyes’ side.
The Hammers have been linked with a move for Zouma, who Ex believes is the club’s priority target – despite reports suggesting that West Ham been in talks over a move for Fiorentina defender Nikola Milenkovic.
On the subject of West Ham’s reported interest in Zouma, Ex had this to say on the matter.
He said: “I’ve always maintained that Kurt Zouma was the number-one target and that’s why whilst we were dealing with [Nikola] Milenkovic, we actually went in more firmly with Zouma, but Zouma turned us down, and he turned us down because he wanted more than we were prepared to offer, even though his wages, proportionately for Chelsea, aren’t that high – he’s one of the lower-paid Chelsea players, so technically, the wages should be within budget.
“There are still talks going on with Zouma and Chelsea. Chelsea are desperate to sell him, because they want to use the money for [Jules] Kounde.
“I do think we’ll go back in for Zouma because that was Moyes’ number-one choice when it became clear that he was available.
“Now, I don’t know whether we’ll get him or not. It’s not close at this point. Moyes has said in an interview we’ll definitely get a centre-back, so who that is at this moment isn’t clear.”
Zouma signed to Chelsea in 2014 from French side Saint-Etienne in a deal worth a reported fee of £13.14 million.
Since then, the 26-year-old, who is currently valued at £28.8 million, has made 151 appearances for Thomas Tuchel’s side across all competitions, in which he has managed to score 10 goals and provide six assists in the process (per Transfermarkt).
TIF Thoughts on Ex’s comments on West Ham’s interest in Zouma…
Taking into account what Ex had to say, it seems as though the club would have to rethink their offer to Zouma in regards to his potential wages if they are to have another shot at trying to sign him this summer.
Would you like to see West Ham sign Zouma?
In our view, given how West Ham managed to concede two goals during their first game of the season away at a relatively goal-shy Newcastle United, perhaps adding a centre-back to their squad this summer to strengthen up the backline would be a good move for the club before the summer transfer deadline.
Also, taking into account how the Frenchman has a significant amount of experience playing in the Premier League, perhaps it would be worth West Ham offering him more wages to secure his signature this summer.