West Ham United’s interest in Burnley defender James Tarkowski has not ‘gone away’, according to Daily Star journalist Paul Brown.
David Moyes is expected to target a new centre-back in the summer to bolster his first-team squad as the Hammers look to continue their progress under the experienced manager.
West Ham’s interest in Tarkowski dates back to September 2020 when they had multiple bids rejected by Burnley, with their final offer reportedly totalling £30 million.
However, with the England international’s current contract set to expire in just a few months’ time, he could finally make the switch to the London Stadium ahead of next season.
A report by 90min during the January transfer window claimed that West Ham were willing to wait until the summer to bring him to east London on a free transfer, and comments by Burnley chairman Alan Pace indicate Tarkowski is open to a Turf Moor exit.
“From my perspective, James is fantastic, and we’d love him to stay longer,” Pace informed Express Sport. “He obviously – at least from what he has said – feels that there are other opportunities and ambitions.”
Newcastle have also been credited with an interest in the 6 foot 1 ace, but it remains to be seen where his long-term future lies.
Although Tarkowski hasn’t yet decided whether to commit his future to the Clarets or not, they are sitting in the relegation zone at present, four points adrift of 17th-placed Everton.
And Brown believes that there is a ‘huge possibility’ that the domineering defender could join Moyes’ West Ham revolution when the market reopens for business.
He told GiveMeSport: “I don’t think the Tarkowski interest has gone away. Obviously, they could be in another division and forced to sell in the summer. I think there’s a huge possibility that that deal could still happen.”
Tarkowski, who is valued at £19.8m by Transfermarkt, ‘became a leader’ early on in his career, according to his former youth team coach Tony Philliskirk.
The 29-year-old has developed into an established Premier League defender, though, racking up 187 appearances in the competition since signing for Burnley in 2016.
And Tarkowski’s underlying numbers highlight why he is in such high demand.