West Ham transfer news: Big club deal January blow

West Ham United latest transfer news

Naturally, most of the news regarding West Ham United's January transfer window has centred around the idea of signing a striker. 

Indeed, with Sebastien Haller having departed, the rumour mill has gone into overdrive on the striker front this month, even if it has been a relatively quiet window for everyone thus far. 

However, according to reports in the print edition of the Daily Express yesterday (page 63), it is the Hammers' attempts to sign a defender late on in the window that have taken a blow. 

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They claim London rivals Chelsea are intent on keeping Emerson Palmieri at the club and have snubbed the Irons' loan enquiry. 

Indeed, West Ham are understood to be tracking the Italian international in an attempt to cover for the injured Arthur Masuaku, who is thought to be ruled out until the end of February. 

Still, despite his lack of game time at Stamford Bridge - playing in only 88 minutes of Premier League action - Frank Lampard was said to want to keep him prior to his sacking. 

West Ham United latest transfer news

GIVEMESPORT's Jonathan Gorrie says... 

Aside from the obvious cover and competition the 26-year-old would provide, it's hard to see why West Ham would want to strengthen an area not quite as pressing as their forward line with Masuaku not too far off recovery. 

Academy graduate Ben Johnson has played in that berth before and, with Masuaku being the club's most progressive ball carrier per 90 minutes of action (averaging 176.3 yards via FBRef), he surely must retain his place upon his return. 

With that in mind, it's hard to look at this as too much a blow, given the Irons have lost only once since Masuaku's injury. 

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