Kevin Nolan’s surprise West Ham exit has opened the door for his former Newcastle colleague Joey Barton to rekindle his move to the Boleyn Ground.
Currently a free agent, the reformed midfield roughhouse was on the verge of signing for the Irons earlier in the summer, only for the deal to collapse at the last.
One of the alleged reasons for the switch going south is the lack of assurances Barton was given regarding his first-team involvement under Slaven Bilic.
Now the Croatian has one less experienced midfielder on his roster, the former QPR man may find a route into the first-team easier to come by.
In light of these developments, Barton is now just 2/1 to join West Ham by September 4th.
What further enhances the prospects of this speculation being realised is that Alex Song has reportedly returned to Barcelona after he was unable to agree a deal with the east Londoners.
The Cameroonian has been widely tipped to sign for the club all summer, but the transfer has hit any amount of stumbling blocks, the latest of which being a contract wrangle.
With time running out and numbers low, West Ham’s desperation for a cheap, easily-attained holding-midfielder could well lead them back to Barton.