Having been France’s hero in their two Euro 2016 matches, Dimitri Payet, 29, is a man in demand and West Ham United fear his head may be turned by the interest of some of Europe’s biggest clubs.
Hammers manager Slaven Bilic exalted France boss Didier Deschamps to move his player to the wider role during the 2 – 0 win over Albania earlier this week and Payet duly delivered the opening goal. Following on from his superb strike in the opening game win over Romania, the hype surrounding the former Marseille man is growing.
Chelsea are the first club to have shown genuine interest, leading West Ham to slap a £60m price tag on the player’s head. That hasn’t deterred their London rivals but more worrying for the Hammers as they move into their new home at London’s Olympic Stadium, is Real Madrid.
Zinedine Zidane has been effusive in his praise for Payet’s performances at the European Championships and a move to the Bernabeu would be too difficult for the mercurial midfielder to resist.
It was a surprise when Payet didn’t feature more prominently when the Player of the Season awards were handed out, having set the Premier League alight with sparkling form and astonishing accuracy from free kicks.
Continuing that form onto the international stage has seen his star rise to become one of the football’s most talked about players. It’s a reputation which has come late in his career and the chance to exploit that with a move to a Champions League club may prove irresistible.
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