West Ham have seemingly won the race to sign Maxwel Cornet after reportedly activating the Burnley winger’s release clause.
Cornet has been one of the most in-demand players to have suffered relegation last season. He made a decent impression during his debut season with Burnley, scoring nine Premier League goals, but it culminated in a drop to the Championship.
Since then, a number of clubs have been looking at him as a potential transfer opportunity. Cornet has attracted the likes of Everton and Newcastle United.
Everton, for example, tried to sign him on loan with a view to a permanent deal. Burnley were only interested in an immediate sale.
And according to Sky Sports News, West Ham are the ones closing in on a deal now.
After activating Cornet’s £17.5million release clause, West Ham have taken a big step towards signing him. Furthermore, the Ivory Coast international will be travelling to London tonight before taking a medical.
He is therefore on the verge of becoming West Ham’s fifth permanent signing of the summer, after Nayef Aguerd, Alphonse Areola, Flynn Downes and Gianluca Scamacca.
Cornet will be a versatile option for David Moyes to work with. The former Lyon star can play as a winger, centre-forward or wing-back.
All of those functions could be useful to West Ham. Before the signing of Scamacca, they were lacking options up front, while there have been suggestions of a formation change that would place a new emphasis on wing-backs.
Maxwel Cornet making good choice with West Ham
With that in mind, this could be smart business for West Ham. And from the player’s perspective, Cornet will get the chance to play in a UEFA competition again.
After previously playing in the Champions League and Europa League with Lyon, he should now get the chance to play in the Europa Conference League with West Ham.
That competition could add another dimension to what should be another exciting season at the London Stadium. After reaching the semi-final of the Europa League last term, the Hammers should be among the favourites for the Conference League.
As they compete in four competitions, West Ham will need to ensure they have appropriate squad depth. The addition of a player like Cornet will certainly help in that regard.
But he isn’t just a depth piece; Cornet can be a key starter for the Irons. Indeed, only Jarrod Bowen and Michail Antonio from the existing West Ham squad scored more Premier League goals than him last season.
And at the age of 25, he could be committing his prime years to West Ham, which only adds to the enthusiasm.
All parties will be hoping he comes through his medical successfully in order for the finishing touches to be put to the move.