Newcastle United-linked midfielder interested in joining West Ham — £40m will seal transfer

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West Ham are considering a move for a player regularly linked with Newcastle United.

West Ham United are reportedly stepping up their interest in Southampton midfielder James Ward-Prowse.

The Hammers became £105million richer last weekend following the British record sale of Declan Rice to London rivals Arsenal. As a way of replacing Rice, manager David Moyes is looking to sign two central midfielders.

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Fulham’s Joao Palhinha has emerged as a prime target but after seeing their latest bid of £45m rejected, West Ham are exploring other options.

Southampton midfielder James Ward-Prowse. (Photo by ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images)Southampton midfielder James Ward-Prowse. (Photo by ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images)
Southampton midfielder James Ward-Prowse. (Photo by ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images)

And according to The Guardian, Moyes is keen on Ward-Prowse, who could cost at least £40m. One way West Ham may look to get the price tag down, however, is by sending Flynn Downes in the opposite direction on loan.

Downes only moved to the London Stadium 12 months ago in a £12m deal from Swansea City but the 24-year-old has struggled to make an impact, making just seven Premier League starts last season.

A conflicting report by the Daily Mail claims that the Saints aren’t interested in Downes, instead preferring a straight cash transfer. That is despite their boss Russell Martin managing Downes at Swansea.

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Either way, Ward-Prowise is understood to be interested in a move to the Hammers.

The 11-capped England international has been regularly linked with Newcastle United since the takeover in October 2021. Ward-Prowse has admirers in United’s recruitment team but the club has ultimately looked elsewhere.

Eddie Howe’s side signed Sandro Tonali from AC Milan for £52m earlier this summer and are set to add Leicester City winger Harvey Barnes to their ranks.

Once Barnes’ £38m is completed, Newcastle will turn their focus to signing a defender with Ward-Prowse’s teammate Tino Livramento top of the wishlist.

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