West Ham have are planning to return to Bournemouth with an £8m bid for Matt Ritchie after the Cherries snubbed a £25m double swoop for the Scot and Callum Wilson a month ago, according to the Telegraph.
At the time the midfielder seemed the less desirable acquisition of the pair, almost an afterthought alongside the offer for his free-scoring teammate.
However, it seems that it is the 26-year-old midfielder that Londoners were keener on all along and, while Ritchie may not be a guaranteed first-team pick at the Olympic Stadium, he certainly represents good value at £8m.
One of only ten British players to have mustered six assists or more in 2015/16 and one of just two do so for a bottom-half side, he proved himself very capable of creating at Premier League level in his first top-flight campaign.
Joining an attacking midfield cadre featuring the likes of Dimitri Payet, Manuel Lanzini and new signing Sofiane Feghouli it’s difficult to envisage him being a regular starter.
However, as a homegrown player, Bournemouth should be able to command a handsome premium for being persuaded to part with his services.
In recent seasons, clubs have paid far more to boost their British-schooled contingent, surely the prime motivation for signing the Scotland international.
Danny Welbeck (£16m) and Calum Chambers (£16m) have both joined Arsenal as far from guaranteed first XI players for double the sum for which the Irons hope to acquire the Scotland international since summer 2014.
West Ham are 9/1 for a top-four finish in 2016/17 after missing out on last season’s Champions League places by just four points.
But for a run of diabolical luck with refereeing decisions during March and April, they may well have finished there with ease in 2015/16.
One of the miscarriages in question came via a soft penalty against Chelsea that allowed the Blues to claim a 2-2 draw – a result the Irons are an enormous 6/1 to avenge with victory of their first match of the new campaign.