West Ham in for Ljungberg as Arsenal line up Dutch star

West Ham United last night made an audacious bid to sign Arsenal's Fredrik Ljungberg. No fee has been discussed so far for the 29-year-old Swedish international, although Arsenal do appear prepared to sell him and West Ham have the funds available.

Arsène Wenger, the Arsenal manager, has lined up Ajax's Dutch international left winger Ryan Babel as Ljungberg's replacement. The 20-year-old is keen to join Arsenal although no deal will be done before the end of the season as Wenger wants to look at other targets. Babel was recently described by the Netherlands coach, Marco van Basten, as having the potential to be the "new Thierry Henry".

If West Ham sign Ljungberg, they will shelve their interest in Shaun Wright-Phillips, who remains reluctant to move to Upton Park despite a £10m bid being lodged, with the winger also offered the same £50,000-a-week wages he earns at Chelsea. Indeed, it is thought that the bid is now close to collapse.

West Ham are confident that they will also be able to match Ljungberg's personal terms - which means he could earn an astonishing £70,000 a week - but although the midfielder is keen to stay in the Premiership, they are unsure if he will want to join a relegation-threatened club.

It is likely that Ljungberg, who is now captain of the Swedish national team, may insist on an exit clause should West Ham be relegated. West Ham could also try to revive Arsenal's interest in their midfielder Nigel Reo-Coker, who wants to leave the club after a traumatic season, and offer him in a possible swap deal.

Wenger was interested in signing Reo-Coker last summer as was Sir Alex Ferguson. It is thought that he has cooled on the player since but is still looking for young central midfield talent which would raise question marks over the future of Gilberto Silva as well as Ljungberg. Arsenal have also, in the past, shown interest in Yossi Benayoun although West Ham are adamant they want to recruit players not sell them.

Ljungberg, who has two years left on his contract at the Emirates Stadium, joined Arsenal in 1998 for £3m from the Swedish club Halmstad and has been a key member of Wenger's squad. However, the signings of Alexander Hleb and Tomas Rosicky have limited his opportunities this season and, although he had a fine Champions' League campaign last season, it is believed he is not central to Wenger's plans.

If West Ham manage to sign Ljungberg, it would represent a huge coup. They also believe it will help them in their attempts to secure their other transfer targets.

West Ham's potential bid for Ljungberg once again shows the determination and ambition of the Icelandic consortium which took control of the club last autumn. The chairman, Eggert Magnusson, promised that money would be spent in the transfer window and West Ham have been busy lining up a number of targets. They have already signed Luis Boa Morte from Fulham for £5m and last night completed a move for West Bromwich Albion midfielder Nigel Quashie. The 28-year-old Scottish international has joined on a three-and-a-half-year deal for an initial £1.5m with a further £250,000 payable if West Ham avoid relegation. He may start against Fulham on Saturday.

West Ham are also in the hunt for Alexei Smertin, who is set to leave Dynamo Moscow. They also want Bolton Wanderers defender Talal Ben Haim, although his advisers may still try to secure a move to Chelsea, and they have not given up hope of signing Middlesbrough's Mark Viduka.

News
A Brazilian wandering spider
news

World's most lethal spider found under a bunch of bananas

News
people
Sport
Mario Balotelli pictured in the win over QPR
footballInternet reacts to miss shocker for Liverpool striker
Voices
Sol Campbell near his home in Chelsea
voices
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
i100
News
Kimi the fox cub
newsBurberry under fire from animal rights group - and their star, Kimi
Sport
Fans of Palmeiras looks dejected during the match between Palmeiras and Santos
footballPalmeiras fan killed trying to 'ambush' bus full of opposition supporters
Arts and Entertainment
filmsIt's nearly a wrap on Star Wars: Episode 7, producer reveals
Life and Style
fashion
News
i100
News
<p>Jonathan Ross</p>
<p>Jonathan Ross (or Wossy, as he’s affectionately known) has been on television and radio for an extraordinarily long time, working on a seat in the pantheon of British presenters. Hosting Friday Night with Jonathan Ross for nine years, Ross has been in everything from the video game Fable to Phineas and Ferb. So it’s probably not so surprising that Ross studied at Southampton College of Art (since rebranded Southampton Solent), a university known nowadays for its media production courses.</p>
<p>However, after leaving Solent, Ross studied History at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies, now part of the UCL, a move that was somewhat out of keeping with the rest of his career. Ross was made a fellow of the school in 2006 in recognition of his services to broadcasting.</p>
TV

Rumours that the star wants to move on to pastures new

News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
The cast of Downton Abbey indulge in some racing at a Point to Point
tvNew pictures promise a day at the races and a loved-up Lady Rose
News
people

Comedian says he 'never laughed as hard as I have writing with Rik'

Arts and Entertainment
Tim Wonnacott dancing the pasadoble
TVStrictly Come Dancing The Result
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album
Hugh Bonneville & Peter James: 'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'

How We Met: Hugh Bonneville & Peter James

'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's heavenly crab dishes don't need hours of preparation

Bill Granger's heavenly crab recipes

Scared off by the strain of shelling a crab? Let a fishmonger do the hard work so you can focus on getting the flavours right
Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

After a remarkable conversion from reckless defender to prolific striker, Monaco's ace says he wants to make his loan deal at Old Trafford permanent
Terry Venables: Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England

Terry Venables column

Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England
The Inside Word: Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past

Michael Calvin's Inside Word

Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past