Second source confirms West Ham want £50m winger as Aston Villa become favourites for Leicester star

Harvey Barnes battling Christian Pulisic

Leicester City winger Harvey Barnes has been confirmed as a West Ham target by a second source, which has also revealed his other admirers.

Barnes is on the verge of suffering relegation with Leicester. Should they end up in the Championship, many of their players will be in demand – and he will be one of them.

According to the Daily Mail, Barnes will be on the market for £50m this summer. The asking price might reduce further if they are relegated – and his potential availability has alerted West Ham.

It comes after ExWHUEmployee named Barnes as being on an eight-man shortlist for David Moyes this summer. There seems to be something serious behind the links, with more information now emerging.

Per the Mail, West Ham have identified Barnes as a key target. If they can sell Declan Rice for £100m, they will have plenty of funds to work with while looking to strengthen other areas of their squad.

However, they will face competition from Aston Villa for the one-cap England international.

The Independent is also reporting that Villa are among Barnes’ admirers – and actually classes them as the favourites to sign him.

The fact that Barnes wouldn’t have to leave the Midlands may influence his decision-making, especially when Villa have constructed an exciting project under Unai Emery and might have European football on offer next season.

West Ham would also earn a third consecutive campaign in Europe if they can win the Conference League final against Fiorentina. Hence, despite their disappointing league position this season, they too could be a destination worth considering.

Harvey Barnes could move regardless of Leicester fate

Even if Leicester escape the drop, they might have to sell Barnes anyway. Balancing the books has been an important task for the Foxes in recent years, so they may have to return to their previous model of cashing in on their top assets, such as Barnes and fellow attacking midfielder, James Maddison.

What league they are in next season will simply affect how much they can demand in terms of a transfer fee.

Interestingly, West Ham are also spying other opportunities to sign relegated players this summer. The Mail has also mentioned James Ward-Prowse, who is captain of Southampton, as one target for their midfield, with his side finishing bottom of the table.

And Thursday’s Transfer Gossip column relayed their interest in Jack Harrison, the winger at risk of relegation with Leeds.

For now, Barnes seems to be a big target. Until now, he has spent his entire career as a Leicester player, only enduring some loan spells away earlier in his career.

At the age of 25, though, it might be time for him to consider leaving Leicester, despite being under contract for another two seasons.

His only focus this week will be on their upcoming last match of the season, which will coincidentally be against his admirers, West Ham.

At the same time, Leeds will host Tottenham. The other team threatened by relegation, Everton, are in action against Bournemouth.

Two of the three will be joining Southampton in the Championship. Consequently, they could see some of their better players snapped up by top-flight clubs.

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