By Joe Ellis

17th Jun, 2022 | 10:59am

West Ham United reject Queens Park Rangers' Emmanuel Loneglo approach

West Ham United have rejected an approach from Queens Park Rangers for young defender Emmanuel Longelo, according to Mike McGrath.

The 21-year-old played just once for David Moyes’ senior team in the 2021-22 campaign as he spent much of his time with the Under-23s but he is attracting interest from the EFL.

QPR are the first side to make an official approach for the Englishman under new manager Michael Beale but McGrath reported, via his personal Twitter account, that the Hammers had turned down that motion.

Longelo did enjoy some further senior football for the Irons’ Under-21 side in the Papa John’s Trophy but with his contract expiring in 12 months’ time, this could be the last chance West Ham get to sell him for a profit.

An impressive five assists in 18 matches in Premier League 2 suggests that he could be a good understudy for Aaron Cresswell at the London Stadium but Beale is keen to take him to the Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium instead.

Now or never

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It is no secret that Longelo has not played enough senior football at 21 years of age as he should with just the two matches in two seasons with West Ham.

He should have been given the chance to leave on loan already but our traditionally small squad means he has been forced to stay at Rush Green playing nothing but academy games on the off chance that a left-back cover is needed.

With Ben Johnson’s promotion to the first team, that need is not as large anymore as he can play on both flanks so there is no logical reason to keep him at the club any longer unless he is going to play on a semi-regular basis.

He hasn’t played enough, however, to earn that chance so the only other explanation is that the Under-23s need a left-back and we can’t be bothered to go and find another one.

It must be a real kick in the teeth for Longelo that the club continue to stand in his way and you can’t see why he’d agree to stay beyond this season regardless of if the club offer him a new deal or not.

In other West Ham news, we have had a bid immediately rejected for a Serie A striker who hit double figures for goals in 2021/22 and we need to pay £25million to prize him away from Italy.

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