Hammers reject 'insulting' Payet offer
A senior West Ham source described Marseille's latest offer for Dimitri Payet as an "insult" after a meeting between the clubs over the France international's future lasted just 10 minutes yesterday.
Marseille have upped their bid for Payet to €25m (£22m) from just under €20m and it was flatly rejected by West Ham despite Payet maintaining he will never play for the club again.
The meeting took place after Marseille president Jacques-Henri Eyraud flew to London to try to persuade West Ham to sell Payet, who has been banished from the first team by manager Slaven Bilic.
Eyraud's talks followed a similar meeting with West Ham co-chairman David Sullivan last Friday involving Payet's agent.
Despite his desire to leave Payet has yet to submit a transfer request - and neither has he offered to repay the £1m he received as a loyalty bonus from West Ham only last September.
Payet also signed a new five-year deal at the club last February, making him the highest paid player in West Ham's history, earning £125,000 a week, but has wanted to leave London since returning unsettled from Euro 2016.
West Ham have been sympathetic to Payet's feelings and have even offered to allow him to go at the end of this season as long as he agrees to play for them until then. However, the matter came to a head last week, with Payet telling a furious Bilic that he would not play.
West Ham value Payet at £40m and although he insists he only wants to leave for his former club, and for personal reasons, Marseille have not come close to a compromise.
Sullivan wrote that Payet was not for sale in his programme notes before Saturday's 3-0 home win over Crystal Palace and although that remains his stance, the club are also realistic enough to accept that should a substantially improved offer be made, it might be better for him to be sold.
The 29-year-old is claiming he is suffering from a back injury but appears to have played his last game for the club.
West Ham are still in negotiations with Brentford over striker Scott Hogan - an Ireland target - with the Championship side holding out for a fee of around £15m, including add-ons. (© Daily Telegraph, London)