Reims want in excess of £25m (€30m) for the 19-year-old, who was wanted by Newcastle earlier this month; Hugo Ekitike has scored eight goals in 10 Ligue 1 games this season; Hammers also looking at Toulouse forward Rhys Healey, as a cheaper alternative to Ekitike
Saturday 29 January 2022 11:23, UK
West Ham remain in talks to sign teenage Reims striker Hugo Ekitike.
The French club want in excess of £25m (€30m) for 19-year-old Ekitike, who has scored eight goals in 10 Ligue 1 appearances this season.
But another name has now emerged, with the Hammers also looking at Toulouse forward Rhys Healey, who would be a far cheaper alternative.
Healey, 27, who began his career at Cardiff and had spells with Colchester, Dundee, Newport, Torquay and MK Dons, would come in as a back-up.
Earlier this month, Reims president Jean-Pierre Caillot gave an interview to Le Quotidien du Sport in France outlining why they rejected Newcastle’s offer for Ekitike.
“It is true that many [clubs] now realise the qualities of the player, but not us. He was trained with us and what he does does not surprise us,” he said.
“Newcastle positioned themselves, we discussed it, [and] they made a proposal which does not suit us. As we don’t necessarily want to see him leave, we have set the bar quite high.
“They offered us €35m (£29.1m) in total but with many bonuses, some of which were almost impossible to achieve – like, for example, winning the Champions League.
“We want €30m (£24.9m) fixed plus €10m (£8.3m) in realisable bonuses.”
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