By Dan Carter

21st Nov, 2023 | 11:10am

West Ham United must ready £20m transfer for Marcos Leonardo after agent speaks out

It has been well documented that West Ham United currently have a striker problem, with David Moyes having limited options at his disposal at the London Stadium.

With Michail Antonio injured on international duty, Moyes has been left with Jarrod Bowen, Danny Ings and Divin Mubama to lead his line until the January transfer window, where it feels likely that the Hammers will look to strengthen their attacking options.

One player that could well be of interest to the Hammers is Santos striker, Marcos Leonardo, after his agent Rafaela Pimenta confirmed that the 20-year-old striker is primed to move away from Brazil and ply his trade in Europe.

As quoted by the Evening Standard (21 November) she said: “Already in the previous transfer market he had the possibility of being sold, but Santos’ sporting situation was very particular.

“He agreed to stay because he wanted to help out until the end of the championship. He didn’t want to leave because it wasn’t the right thing to do. But the time has come to move. He wants to have a European experience and his time will come this winter.”

West Ham are reportedly in the mix for the Brazilian forward’s signature this January, alongside several Premier League rivals such as Newcastle United and Fulham, with further teams around Europe admiring the striker who is valued at £20million by Santos [Graeme Bailey, 1 November].

Now that Leonardo’s agent has openly admitted that her client would be keen on a move to Europe when the transfer window opens, the Hammers must be beginning to prepare a bid to bring the striker to the London Stadium this January.

Moyes has been reliant on Bowen to provide most of the Hammers goals so far this season, with the Englishman scoring eight in his opening 12 matches, while Ings is yet to find the net and Antonio hasn’t scored in claret and blue since September.

Leonardo on the other hand has scored 13 goals in 27 matches in the Brazilian Serie A this season and at only 20-years-old he has plenty of room to improve and develop, especially if he were to join a Premier League side.

It is likely West Ham will face competition from some of Europe and the Premier League’s biggest clubs, but they should be able to match the reported £20 million fee required to secure the striker and the prospect of regular first-team football may give them the edge.

A new striker is a necessity when the January window opens and while a young Brazilian may represent a risky purchase, Leonardo’s desire to move to Europe this January could persuade the Irons to act on their interest, especially given the lack of options they have up front.

In other West Ham news, Hammers insiders have shared an update on Jarrod Bowen’s injury sustained on international duty