West Ham are weighing up a double raid on Championship club Watford.
The Hammers have been monitoring wantaway striker Emmanuel Dennis all summer and have now added Hornets teammate Ismaila Sarr to their extensive list of targets.
A move for Dennis, 24, is likely to depend on the outcome of bids for Chelsea ace Armando Broja and Sassuolo’s Gianluca Scamacca.
Watford’s new manager Rob Edwards is hoping to keep Sarr – also 24 – and build the Hertfordshire side’s quest for a Premier League return around him.
But Edwards has been told by the Watford hierarchy that he will be sold if a suitable offer comes in for the Senegal international.
SAINTS SWOOP IN FOR MAGPIES TARGET
Newcastle’s hopes of cashing in on Bordeaux’s financial woes to land one of their teenage talents for a bargain fee have been dashed by Southampton.
The Magpies have held talks with Bordeaux for striker Sekou Mara, who turns 20 next week and is regarded as one of Europe’s best emerging young strikers.
But despite being amongst the world’s wealthiest clubs, the St James’ Park outfit held off making a formal bid in case Bordeaux’s crippling debt forced them into administration and therefore being forced to accept a knockdown price.
That allowed Southampton to nip in and agree an £11m deal for Mara, son of a French TV presenter.
talkSPORT has been told Mara, who scored four goals in five games in the prestigious Toulon tournament earlier this year, was keen to push through the move to St Mary’s to ensure Bordeaux were properly compensated.
Once the move is formalised, Mara will become Saints’ fifth summer signing and the south coast club are still on the hunt for at least another forward player.
EVERTON BIDDING FOR BILLY
Frank Lampard is ready to step up his interest in Chelsea midfielder Billy Gilmour after the task of ensuring Everton do not face another relegation dogfight was laid bare by a humbling pre-season defeat in the USA.
Lampard was left seething by Everton’s 4-0 thrashing at the hands of MLS side Minnesota United and used the humiliation to make it clear to owner Farhad Moshiri that he is in need of reinforcements.
With transfer funds at Goodison Park in short supply, Lampard has been given the green light to explore a loan move for Gilmour.
The pint-sized Scotland international made his Premier League debut under Chelsea icon Lampard and is understood to be keen on a reunion with his former boss following a disastrous spell at Norwich last season.
CAR CHASE STALLS
Aston Villa’s £20m price tag for teenage midfielder Carney Chukwuemeka has come as a shock to their Premier League rivals.
Newcastle and Manchester City are among the clubs interested in midfielder Chukwuemeka, 18, who is refusing to put pen to paper on a new contract at Villa.
But neither are willing to meet Villa’s mega-money valuation for a player who can sign for minimal compensation with an overseas club in January.
With manager Steven Gerrard reluctant to pick Chukwuemeka unless he commits his future to the club, the current stalemate appears a loser for both parties.