West Ham bid for midfield star rejected with sizeable fee gap named, but selling club prepare replacement

Lucas Paqueta on the ball for Lyon

Lyon have reportedly rejected the bid from West Ham for midfielder Lucas Paqueta, insisting that they want a lot more than the initial proposal.

West Ham have picked up the pace of their summer transfer window despite a slow start. Emerson Palmieri is the seventh recruit David Moyes has added to his squad in recent weeks.

However, he is not finished there and could yet sign two more players. Moyes confirmed his club made a bid for 33-cap Brazil international Paqueta, 24.

Several reports have claimed the bid is worth £33.7million (€40million).

French publication L’Equipe, though, puts the bid at €50million (£42million) with bonuses included.

The source adds that Lyon want €10million more, taking their valuation of Paqueta to £50million. It remains unclear whether West Ham will go back in with a second bid for the midfielder.

Indeed, the Hammers are concurrently keen on Club Brugge star Hans Vanaken. Moyes confirmed in his Wednesday press conference that his club have improved their bid for him. The latest offer amounted to €11million (£9.2million).

Back with Paqueta, UOL Esporte claims that Lyon are thinking of signing Joao Gomes from Flamengo as their star man’s replacement.

The 20-year-old has risen through the Brazilian club’s ranks to become a key player for the club.

Paqueta reportedly faces a ‘decisive’ next few days. His agents are based in London until Friday and are reportedly ready to speak to multiple Premier League clubs in case Lyon accept an offer.

West Ham will supposedly increase their bid slightly, but L’Equipe claims that the increase will not amount to much – especially considering Lyon’s valuation.

Paqueta has impressed for Lyon since his 2020 move from AC Milan. Last season, he was named the best foreign player in France’s Ligue 1.

Paqueta would prove strong West Ham statement

West Ham once again showed glimmers of their top-six and top-four credentials last season. The arrival of Paqueta would help solidify those ambitions.

After a sixth-placed Premier League finish in 2020/21 and a seventh-placed ranking in 2022, West Ham know they were in the top four for a decent period of time.

However, they did not have the staying power – or the squad depth – to keep up with Arsenal and Tottenham last term.

Adding Paqueta to their ranks alongside Vanaken would be a statement of intent that West Ham mean business in trying to shake up the top six even more.

Paqueta is an accomplished international midfielder at only 24, who has his best years ahead of him.

Moyes admitted that such “pedigree” does not automatically mean he will flourish in the Premier League. But his former Lyon team-mate and fellow Brazilian Bruno Guimaraes has impressed at Newcastle.

If that deal is anything to go by as a reference, West Ham have further reasons not to give up hope on Paqueta.