West Ham United are to re-double their efforts to sign Giles Barnes before tomorrow's transfer window deadline but may have to pay more than £5m for the talented 19-year-old midfielder.
The Premier League club are also hopeful of securing Nicky Shorey although they will have to offer £6m after a £5m bid was yesterday rejected by Reading. The 26-year-old has told the Royals he wants to leave and has no intention of signing a new contract.
However, West Ham's chances of securing Adriano are fading fast despite agreeing to pay a transfer fee of up to £15m for the Brazilian striker rather than a one-year loan deal as was initially proposed.
West Ham are also willing to meet his wage demands but believe their prospects have been harmed because of a dispute between Adriano and his club, Internazionale, although it also appears that the player has now rejected the move.
It may be a deal that West Ham return to in January, as with their continued interest in Eidur Gudjohnsen. But there are also suggestions that Inter are less keen to let Adriano go because Alvaro Recoba, another striker deemed surplus to requirements, is close to agreeing a move to Torino.
Inter had tried to do a deal with Arsenal – with the Italian club wanting to take midfielder Mathieu Flamini in return but the proposal was dismissed by Arsène Wenger. Manchester City, however, do remain interested in Adriano.
West Ham have contacted Derby County again to inquire about Barnes, despite having at least two previous bids, of £2.5m and £4m, rejected. The player has missed the start of the season through injury but is now believed to be close to fitness.
The double fracture to Kieron Dyer's right leg, which will see him out of action for at least six months, has not influenced the interest in Barnes despite Julien Faubert, another right-sided player, also suffering from a long-term injury.
Derby, meanwhile, are still hopeful of signing Celtic's Kenny Miller for £2.5m, while a deal is set to be agreed with the Monaco striker Mohammed Kallon, who is available on a free transfer, as they attempt to boost their striking options.
It is unlikely they will be joined by David Nugent after the Portsmouth striker, who has been told he can leave by manager Harry Redknapp despite joining for £6m only a few weeks ago, insisted that he wanted to stay at Fratton Park.
Redknapp confirmed that Derby had made an inquiry for Nugent. After Tuesday's League Cup victory over Leeds United, Redknapp said: "It's down to what David wants to do. I brought him in here and like him but it's no secret Derby would like to buy him. His old manager [Billy Davies] fancies him so we'll have to wait and see. They have been in for him. If David wants to go, he can go. If I have to raise some money for a top player, it's down to who I get an offer for."
Redknapp had hoped to use the money to sign another striker himself. However, his attempts to land a number of targets, including Bolton's Nicolas Anelka, have also been rebuffed.Reuse content