West Ham and Newcastle are hoping to sign Southampton’s Mario Lemina, according to reports.
The midfielder has spent the season on loan at Fulham and has looked comfortable competing in the Premier League.
He’s made 25 appearances for the Cottagers, scoring one goal and assisting another.
According to The Guardian, West Ham and Newcastle are plotting a summer raid for Lemina.
Both teams have made initial contact with the player’s representatives over a move in the coming months.
Fulham have an option to buy Lemina come the end of the season but it’s unclear whether he would want to join if they are relegated.
The report states that he will be available for around £7million as he is not part of Ralph Hasenhuttl’s plans for next term.
West Ham and Newcastle see that as a bargain given his potential and prior experience in the Prem.
The two sides look set for a transfer battle over the 27-year-old.
Lemina was brought to England by the Saints for a then club record fee of £15.4million from Juventus.
However, he’s not played for them since May 2019 and spent last season on loan with Turkish side Galatasaray.
The Gabon international made his Fulham debut in the 4-3 defeat to Leeds towards the start of the campaign.
Should Newcastle beat David Moyes’ men to the signing, then Lemina could form part of a new-look midfield at St James’ Park.
The Magpies are also lining up a permanent move for Englishman Joe Willock, who has been in great form since joining on loan.
He’s scored four important goals to give them a major boost in their relegation battle.
Willock’s price tag is yet to be set but, with no obvious route to the first team, Arsenal may be willing to let him leave.
Newcastle have also been linked with Celtic centre-back Kristoffer Ajer. The Norwegian could be available for as little as £8million after running down his contract north of the border.