Slaven Bilic has dismissed speculation linking West Ham United with a stunning bid for England international star Daniel Sturridge.
Reports in the Brentwood Gazette earlier this week claimed the Hammers were prepared offer £18million for the 26-year-old, as they look for a new striker during the transfer window. Sturridge has endured a difficult time with injuries whilst on Merseyside, but when fit, he is widely regarded as one of the best and most prolific frontmen in the Premier League.
The acquisition of Sturridge would certainly have been one of the more surprising transfers of recent times, but when asked about the link, Upton Park boss Bilic wasted no time in setting the record straight: “That is only a rumour and there is nothing behind it. I am not talking about who we want – Daniel Sturridge is a big player and a big name – but that is only paper talk.”
Bilic has a lack of options in attack ahead of the visit of Manchester City on Saturday, with both Andy Carroll and Diafra Sakho sidelined with injury. Nikica Jelavic is available although it is believed the club are prepared to listen to offers for his signature this month, whilst it was confirmed on Thursday that Argentine Mauro Zarate has left for Fiorentina in a £1.8million deal.
This has intensified the quest to sign a new striker, with Emmanuel Emenike widely reported to be the man most likely to arrive before the deadline. The Nigeria international worked under Bilic at Fenerbahce, the club the player remains under contract to, but an agreement will also have to be reached with Dubai’s Al Ain where the 28-year-old is currently on loan.