By George Overhill

29th Jun, 2022 | 4:10pm

West Ham United not ready to bid as Chelsea hold Oleksandr Zinchenko talks

West Ham face the prospect of missing out on a long-term transfer target as Chelsea have held talks on Oleksandr Zinchenko, the Daily Mail reports.

The Hammers have been interested for a year, with Claret & Hugh reporting back on 29 March that “discreet inquiries” were made last summer for the 25-year-old who David Moyes is a “huge admirer” of.

The Ukrainian has since become available as Manchester City are looking to sign Brighton defender Marc Cucurella, with the Irons and Everton previously the main suitors.

But according to the latest report “funds are not as readily available at those clubs” and the London rivals have stolen a march by entering into discussions over a move for him.

The Stamford Bridge side are already in contact with City over Raheem Sterling and are now looking at making a triple move for the England attacker plus two Irons targets in Zinchenko and defender Nathan Ake.

Financial difficulties at Everton are widely reported but the reason for the delay in a bid from the London Stadium is not expanded on.

Overtake

If it wasn’t bad enough that the club are apparently being held back from a move for a player that the manager has wanted for a year, it is Chelsea of all teams that have jumped ahead.

With the signing of Nayef Aguerd the Irons’ interest in Dutchman Ake may have subsided, but there is no indication that the same is the case with Zinchenko.

The midfielder turned left-back would be useful at either position at the London Stadium, with Moyes looking to strengthen in both areas.

The Hammers have started to get business done this summer with the arrival of the Moroccan defender and the permanent deal for on-loan keeper Alphonse Areola.

They are planning to take Armando Broja from Stamford Bridge for substantial money, although Thomas Tuchel could put an end to that if he decides he wants to keep the Albanian for the upcoming season.

That in itself would be a blow to plans in East London, which would be compounded if the German also manages to swoop in and take Zinchenko from under the Irons’ noses.

Why money should be unavailable at this stage doesn’t make sense, considering what has been spent so far – somewhere around £30million – compared to the multiple record-breaking bids they apparently made in January.

City may not be willing to allow a whole host of players to move to a rival which could leave the Ukrainian international up for grabs so if Moyes is serious about his interest West Ham would need to move quickly since Everton also see him as one of their “main targets” [Fabrizio Romano].