Thursday 22 February 2018

Hammers' snag Joleon Lescott from Manchester City

West Ham player Carlton Cole (r) has a shot blocked by Cardiff City's Steven Caulker
West Ham player Carlton Cole (r) has a shot blocked by Cardiff City's Steven Caulker

Jason Burt

West Ham have agreed a three-and-a-half-year deal with Manchester City to sign Joleon Lescott as they battle against Premier League relegation.

However the move may collapse because City are adamant they will not release the England international until after January 20 and West Ham are unsure they can wait another week, despite a victory at relegation rivals Cardiff City yesterday.

The pressure eased a little on manager Sam Allardyce as West Ham climbed out of the relegation zone. Carlton Cole was on hand to convert from close range from Matt Jarvis' excellent pass, before James Tomkins was sent off in the second half.

Mark Noble sealed the win in stoppage time, and with Andy Carroll making a first appearance of the season as a substitute this was a good day for Allardyce with co-owners David Gold and David Sullivan in attendance.

But it is still unclear whether Lescott wants to move to West Ham and face a survival fight or whether he would prefer to wait to see if offers come in from other clubs such as Tottenham Hotspur and Newcastle United.

The 31-year-old has six months left on his contract at the Etihad and wants to secure regular first-team football as he battles for a place in England's squad for the World Cup in Brazil.

West Ham are believed to have agreed a deal with City a week ago matching Lescott's wages of £90,000 a week for the rest of this campaign and then agreeing to pay the central defender £70,000 a week for another three years even if they are relegated.

City have indicated that Lescott will be allowed to go once all their central defenders are match fit. Martin Demichelis, Vincent Kompany and Matija Nastasic are all now available, while Micah Richards is also fit.


Irish Independent

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