According to reports in Italy, West Ham have made a £17.5m move to sign reported Rafa Benitez target Stefan Sturaro – with Tuttosport claiming that this offer is significantly more than the £11.4m Newcastle were willing to pay for the Juventus midfielder.
The Italian international’s agent confirmed our interest in the 25-year-old at the back end of last year, and since then Benitez has been regularly linked with a move for the midfielder.
It was reported earlier in the week that we were prepared to pay £11.4m for Sturaro, however our hopes of signing him could be fading after news that West Ham have now made an offer considerably higher than ours (£17.5m).
West Ham have offered £17.5 million for Juventus midfielder Stefano Sturaro. Newcastle United had been linked with a move earlier this week with a £11.4 million bid. [Tuttosport] #NUFC
— NUFC 360 (@NUFC360) June 20, 2018
It’s hard for us to know if anything coming from these Italian outlets is actually true or not, but there’s any truth that West Ham are willing to pay £17.5m then we can almost certainly rule out the idea of signing Sturaro.
He’s clearly a player Rafa likes (his agent confirmed our interest recently) and he’s someone who we could well be looking at to replace Merino, but it sounds like we’ll have to offer much more than an alleged £11.5m if we want to sign him this summer.