Craig Dawson is close to making his loan move to West Ham a permanent one, reports claim.
Dawson was brought in by West Ham during the extended domestic transfer window in October. He arrived on a season-long loan from Watford after suffering relegation to the Championship.
West Ham had been chasing a number of centre-backs in the summer, but had to settle for Dawson in the end. He was not quite the high-profile addition they had been hoping for.
Despite this, he has exceeded expectations and proven himself as a key player at the London Stadium. So far this season, he has started 15 games in all competitions.
He is having an impact at both ends of the pitch, even scoring his fourth goal of the season in the 2-0 win over Leeds on Monday.
Now, attention is turning to Dawson’s future for next season. Various reports indicate that there are clauses in his contract that could make his West Ham stay permanent.
According to The Athletic, Dawson will automatically become a permanent West Ham player if he makes three more starts in the Premier League this season.
Given the form he has been in, that seems a matter of when, not if. It could happen as early as April 3rd, when West Ham play Wolves.
Whenever he does reach the required number of games, West Ham will owe Watford a fee of £2m – as previously revealed by the Evening Standard. That will take the total costs of the deal up to £3m after they paid £1m for the loan in October.
There are also potential bonuses on top of that price, related to where West Ham finish in the final standings. Currently, they are in a push for the European places.
Moyes believes Dawson worthy of stay
West Ham boss David Moyes recently confirmed the existence of a clause in Dawson’s contract relating to a permanent deal.
In doing so, Moyes outlined why the 30-year-old would deserve the move.
“There is a good chance although we are not quite there yet but there is a clause in it after a certain amount of games and we are getting very close to that number.
“His performances, his attitude and determination are certainly worthy of that anyway.
“We brought him in, it took him a while until the Southampton game I think it was before he got a start but that was because of the form of Fabian Balbuena and Angelo Ogbonna but he has come in and added goals to us as well and his experience has been really important and he is playing really well this season.”
Reports claim Dawson already has an agreement in place for a two-year contract if the conditions for a permanent move materialise.
Securing his future would be another boost to West Ham, who are already building for next season. Both Mark Noble and Lukasz Fabianski have pledged their futures to the club for next season and more could follow.