Nottingham Forest are in advanced talks with Jesse Lingard as they try to beat West Ham to the signing of the former Manchester United midfielder on a free transfer. West Ham have held lengthy negotiations with Lingard but are in danger of seeing him move to the City Ground.
Forest have held productive discussions with Lingard and it is understood that they have made an extremely lucrative offer. The 29-year-old, who has also been targeted by Everton, Leicester, Tottenham and Newcastle, has been holding out for £180,000 a week.
West Ham are reluctant to pay that much, but Forest have shown a willingness to smash their wage structure for Lingard, who reportedly also received offers from Major League Soccer clubs and a team in Saudi Arabia.
It is understood that a deal to take Lingard to the City Ground is yet to be finalised. There have been suggestions that Forest expect the England international to join West Ham. However West Ham believe they are likely to miss out on a reunion with Lingard.
David Moyes has been pursuing Lingard all summer. The versatile attacking midfielder had an excellent loan at West Ham last year and Moyes has made several attempts to sign him on a permanent basis.
However West Ham have grown frustrated during talks with Lingard. They have questioned whether he really wants to play for them, with sources saying that Lingard should already be in pre-season training.
Moyes is keen to bring in a player capable of operating on the left wing. If Lingard goes to Forest an alternative target for West Ham could be Blackburn’s Ben Brereton Díaz.