Payet could make shock return to West Ham

Dave Tickner

Now this would be a fun one. Dimitri Payet is reportedly keen on a return to West Ham this summer, despite the acrimonious nature of his departure 18 months ago.

A firm favourite at Upton Park after a £10.7m move from Marseille, things went sour after the club’s move to – and subsequent struggles at – the London Stadium.

Manager Slaven Bilic wanted Payet out of the club, while the playmaker declared himself bored of playing for a struggling side. Co-owner David Sullivan calmed things down by saying Payet had betrayed the club.

The France star duly returned to Marseille for £25m in January 2017 and helped them to last season’s Europa League final before a first-half injury cut his involvement short and also scuppered his chances of going to the World Cup.

There are plenty of obvious sticking points here, not least how former team-mates would respond to Payet’s return given the nature of his departure. It is understood that new manager Mauricio Pellegrini has spoken to senior pros about any move.

It is also likely that Marseille would demand a profit on their £25m outlay.

The Hammers are in dire need of attacking flair after Manuel Lanzini suffered a cruciate ligament injury that will keep him out for six months.

One deal that should go through for West Ham soon enough is the free transfer of Jack Wilshere.