London-based club West Ham United are thought to be plotting a transfer raid of their neighbours Arsenal in the summer, with the Hammers targeting out-of-favour striker Lucas Perez.
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The Spanish centre-forward has not seen much action this season for Arsenal, making only 22 appearances for the Gunners across all competitions so far. Furthermore, the 28-year-old has only started in two league games this season – a treatment he certainly did not expect when he signed for the London outfit back in June last year from La Liga outfit Deportivo La Coruna.
Understandably, the former PAOK and Dynamo Kiev goal-scorer has been very vocal about his dissatisfaction about the lack of first-team action given him so far during this campaign and is keen on leaving the club if things don’t change.
The player’s agent, Rodrigo Llovelle, has confirmed his client’s unhappiness at the Emirates Stadium, telling Italian outlet Calciomercato, “Lucas wants to leave at any cost. He’s not happy at Arsenal, he’s not settled in and he hasn’t had the chance to play and to prove himself.”
Enter West Ham, who are thought to be keen on handing Perez an escape route away from Arsenal. According to The Times, Hammers boss Slaven Bilic is thought to be a fan of Perez’s talents and attacking attributes and is willing to bring the player to the Olympic Stadium next season.
The Hammers have been struggling to score goals this year and believe reinforcement up front is necessary. In that regard, they have made the signing of Lucas Perez their priority once the transfer market re-opens in the summer.
Arsenal, however, are unlikely to yield easily to West Ham’s wishes to sign Perez and will most definitely ask for at least £17-million to let the striker go – the same value they paid for the Coruna-born footballer last year.
Of course, whether the Hammers will be willing to give in to such a demand is still anyone’s guess