WEST HAM are reportedly growing confident of signing Eddie Nketiah from Arsenal after Folarin Balogun’s contract U-turn.
The Standard claims David Moyes is in for a new striker this summer.
And Nketiah is now the main target as he prepares to enter the final year of his Emirates deal.
The Arsenal forward, 21, has struggled for minutes under Mikel Arteta this season, with most of his 15 Premier League appearances coming off the bench.
And following the news that Balogun is set to sign a new Arsenal contract - having looked set for a free transfer this summer - opportunities are set to become even more limited.
That has opened the door for West Ham to make an approach after they failed to replace Seb Haller in January.
The Hammers have been linked with the likes of Chelsea’s Tammy Abraham, Sevilla’s Youssef En-Nesyri and Brentford’s Ivan Toney.
But Nketiah is now emerging as the man Moyes wishes to lead his line next term.
it’s becoming more unlikely he will commit his future to Arsenal.
And with his deal expiring in 2022, the Gunners may have little choice but to sell him come the end of the season.
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However, the north Londoners will be pleased to be keeping Balogun, with only one of the two youngsters realistically able to stay and fight for a place while Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette remain.
Confirming the news, Arteta explained: “We are going to make it official when it’s official and everything is done.
“But as I said before, I have always been very positive that he wanted to stay at the club. We are very close.
“[How did we persuade Balogun?] Just by trying to understand why he got to the point he was really thinking about leaving after being raised here and the feeling he built towards the club.
“Once you understand the position of him, then try to explain what you want to do, how involved he is going to be in the project.
“Then, get the full commitment from the club and support from [director] Edu, who has done an incredible job as well.”