Chelsea have reportedly warned West Ham that Kurt Zouma will not be allowed to leave for a penny less than their £25m valuation amid an enquiry from the Hammers.
The French defender featured prominently in the Blues side during Frank Lampard’s 18-month tenure. But the appointment of Thomas Tuchel saw Zouma pushed way down the pecking order. Indeed, Thiago Silva, Andreas Christensen and Antonio Rudiger were all preferred before him.
And with Chelsea looking to bring in Jules Kounde from Sevilla, Zouma’s days appear numbered. Reports in Wednesday’s Paper Talk claim Sevilla have given Thomas Tuchel encouragment over a £56m deal.
Indeed, the Blues reportedly tried to include Zouma as part of their push to sign Kounde. And while the La Liga side only want a straight cash sale, that has left Zouma knowing it’s time to move on.
A new possible escape route, however, could open up elsewhere with both Atletico Madrid and West Ham seemingly keen.
David Moyes is desperate to bolster his Hammers squad as they prepare to embark on Europa League football.
And Moyes has made adding to his central defensive options one of his top priorities this summer.
As per 90min, the Hammers have since been informed that Chelsea are unwilling to compromise on their £25m asking price for Zouma.
Given he has made 150 appearances for Chelsea and a further 66 over loan spells at Everton and Stoke, the 26-year-old comes with plenty of Premier League know-how.
However, it appears the Hammers will only look at Zouma once a deal for their top target is wrapped up.
Milenkovic talks progress for West Ham
Indeed, Moyes is understood to be prioritising a move for Fiorentina’s Nikola Milenkovic before any move for Zouma.
Talks are ongoing with the Serbian’s representatives about wages and agent fees.
However, there is a growing belief a deal for Milenkovic will soon be struck.
The Telegraph highlighted a potential issue regarding his transfer valuation in early August. Fiorentina are reportedly seeking a fee of between €18m-€20m for his signature.
But with just one year remaining on his current deal and a contract renewal unlikely, Sport Witness reveal the two clubs could soon meet in the middle.
Citing Italian outlet Corriere dello Sport, they state Milenkovic ‘will leave for West Ham.’
The Italian newspaper insist David Moyes’ side have offered €15m for Milenkovic who is ‘about to leave.’
With the Serb likely to sign, it remains to be seen whether the Hammers will also move for Zouma.