West Ham are in the final stages of concluding a deal for Kurt Zouma after the Chelsea defender successfully concluded a medical in Paris.
The two clubs have agreed a £25m fee after some hard negotiating, and personal terms have also been agreed with Zouma after lengthy discussions with his representatives.
90min understands that Zouma will become the Hammers’ highest earner – increasing the salary he was receiving at Stamford Bridge by close to 50% – though some of his pay packet will be made up of performance related bonuses.
Medical checks have now been completed on the 26-year-old, and although there were initial concerns over a previous knee injury – Zouma ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament playing for Chelsea back in February 2016 – that will not prevent a deal from being completed.
Indeed, West Ham are satisfied with Zouma’s recent injury record, and he’s now poised to sign a five-year contract and complete the formalities of a move to the London Stadium.
His arrival will be a huge boost to West Ham manager David Moyes, who is in dire need of additional reinforcements to bolster his squad. The Scot is leading the club into the group stages of the Europa League for the first time, and the increased schedule – and air miles – will take a toll on player fitness.
The Hammers currently have just three central defensive options. Craig Dawson and Angelo Ogbonna are Moyes’ first-choice pairing, while Issa Diop is waiting in the wings and will likely have a big part to play this season.
Moyes is hopeful that he can add to his squad further before next Tuesday’s transfer deadline, but did confess in his press conference ahead of the game against Crystal Palace that there’s a ‘really good chance’ he does not sign an additional centre forward.
Michail Antonio is West Ham’s only recognised frontman, and even though he’s started the season in fine style – scoring three goals and setting up a further three in his first two Premier League outings – he has struggled with injuries in the past, predominantly hamstring related issues.
Andriy Yarmolenko and Jarrod Bowen are other makeshift options, though Moyes did not rule out weighing into the loan market if the right player was available.