West Ham want Man City star as ‘makeweight’ in huge transfer as £85m standout ‘says yes’ to exit

Lewis Oldham
Man City target Paqueta
Lucas Paqueta in action against Man City.

West Ham United are reportedly ‘interested’ in Cole Palmer and the Manchester City starlet could be used as a ‘makeweight’ in the Lucas Paqueta deal.

Paqueta has emerged as a serious target for Man City as they attempt to sign a new attacking midfielder.

The Brazil international made his move to West Ham last summer after the Premier League outfit paid around £50m to sign him from Ligue Un side Lyon.

The 25-year-old grew into last season as he ended up enjoying a brilliant debut year at West Ham. He grabbed five goals and seven assists in 43 appearances across all competitions as he helped them win the Europa Conference League.

It was revealed earlier this week that Man City have made a £70m bid for Paqueta, who has a £85m release clause in his contract that does not become active until 2024.

It has since been reported that West Ham ‘expect much more than’ £70m for Paqueta but the player has ‘said yes’ to a move to the Etihad.

The Evening Standard are now reporting that ‘West Ham are interested in City forward Palmer, who could be used as a makeweight in talks over a potential deal for Paqueta’.

Paqueta’s potential move to Man City ‘could limit’ Palmer’s game time this season and the Hammers will ‘push to include him in negotiations with City over the Brazilian, either on loan or in a permanent deal’.

The report adds: ‘West Ham manager David Moyes likes the idea of using Jarrod Bowen as a centre-forward and has identified Palmer as a target to play on the right wing.’

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Florian Plettenberg is meanwhile reporting that Paqeuta is ‘not unsaleable’ but West Ham are ‘demanding more than £85m’ for their prized asset.

Former Premier League midfielder Danny Murphy thinks Paqueta’s move to Man City “makes sense”.

“I think if you look at their three midfield positions at the moment, you’d say at the start of the season if he was picking his best team you’d have Rodri, [Mateo] Kovacic and [Kevin] De Bruyne,” Murphy told talkSPORT.

“But you need more than three, obviously, Bernardo Silva can play in there if he stays but he generally played out right in the big games last season.

“Paqueta could play in the De Bruyne role, he’s obviously not in the same level as De Bruyne but he’s creative and he can play that. He can also play the Kovacic role where he’s a bit deeper because he plays there for Brazil.

“It makes sense to me. His last three months in a West Ham shirt were really good. I thought the fans were starting to see the real Paqueta then he had some terrific games near the end of the season.”

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