West Ham have been warned they face a battle to keep hold of Tomas Soucek if he impresses on the international stage with Czech Republic at Euro 2020.
Soucek has been a great asset for West Ham ever since they brought him in from Slavia Prague in January 2020. After an impressive first few months in the claret and blue shirt, the club wasted no time in making his loan move permanent. And he has continued to flourish since then.
In his first full season as a Premier League player, Soucek featured in all 38 games. With 10 goals along the way, he helped the Hammers to a Europa League spot.
As such, they are already trying to tie him down to a new contract, despite him signing terms until 2024 when he joined. By extending that deal, they hope they can fend off interest from elsewhere.
For example, Manchester United have been linked with the 26-year-old, who could bring more balance to their midfield.
And clubs of that stature will be keeping an eye on Soucek during Euro 2020, according to Alan Hutton.
Soucek started as a defensive midfielder for Czech Republic in their opening game against Scotland, the country Hutton made 50 caps for before his retirement.
“He caught the eye with his performances at West Ham last season,” Hutton told Football Insider.
“Going into this tournament, I think everybody would have eyes on him after playing so well. It was a little bit different from how he plays at West Ham. He was in that defensive role to do a job, to mark the likes of John [McGinn] and stop him creating things.
“He went about it quietly; you didn’t see him too much. For actual football people, watching the game, you knew exactly what he was doing. Ultimately, the job he was put there to do was to stop the likes of John McGinn.
“Of course people will be watching him. This is such a big tournament team beamed round the whole world; all eyes will be on it.
“Directors of football, managers, everybody will be watching every single team to see if they can get a gem. Tomas Soucek would obviously be top of that list.”
West Ham eye midfielder move
Meanwhile, reports have linked West Ham with an additional reinforcement in the territory Soucek occupies.
The player in question is very much in the Soucek mould, standing at 6ft 1in tall and providing a threat from set pieces.
His qualities became clear in a two-goal cameo against Borussia Dortmund last season and West Ham may have to pay €20m to sign him.