Newcastle agree fee with West Ham for Kevin Nolan

Newcastle skipper Kevin Nolan appears to be closing in on a move to West Ham after it emerged he is to undergo a medical with the London club.

Press Association Sport understands the Magpies' top scorer from last season has travelled south to have the tests after rejecting a new contract at St James' Park.

Newcastle rejected an offer described as "derisory" for the 28-year-old, who has two years remaining on his existing deal, from the Hammers last week, but their pursuit seems to have taken a step forward.

Neither club was commenting on the matter this lunchtime as a man, whose retention was a priority for manager Alan Pardew this summer, edged closer to the exit door.

The Londoners are understood to have initially offered around £1.5million for the midfielder, who would be re-united with former Bolton boss Sam Allardyce at Upton Park if the deal went through.

Nolan, who arrived on Tyneside in a £4million switch from the Trotters in January 2009, has been a key figure in Newcastle's fightback from the ignominy of relegation from the Barclays Premier League at the end of the 2008-09 season.

He, along with Steve Harper, Alan Smith and Nicky Butt, pulled together a dispirited dressing room and helped to foster the new spirit which saw the Magpies storm to the Championship title at the first attempt and then secure their top-flight status in relative comfort last season.

Nolan contributed 18 goals to the promotion campaign and a further 12 during the season which ended last month, the first time he has made double figures in the Premier League.

However, talks over a new deal stalled with the club operating under Mike Ashley's stringent policy unwilling to meet the player's requirements in terms of length of contract.

He could have seen out the remaining two years of his deal at St James' and then left for nothing, but it appears that the Magpies are ready to cash in on him now.

With Joey Barton having been told he will not be offered a new deal and Jose Enrique having to date failed to respond to his latest offer, Pardew could yet lose all three men he had hoped to tie up before starting his recruitment work in earnest.

That will not go down well with fans who thought the summer would be spent augmenting a relatively settled squad.

Pardew has managed to add France midfielder Yohan Cabaye to the mix and will have Hatem Ben Arfa and, fitness permitting, Dan Gosling at his disposal next season.

The club also remains in the market for a series of targets, although they have already missed out on Lorient frontman Kevin Gameiro.

Newcastle later confirmed that Nolan was undergoing a medical after the two clubs agreed an undisclosed fee.

Fellow midfielder Barton expressed his surprise via Twitter, writing: "Just on my way to Ascot, feel sick."

Barton added: "Great player, leader, captain, person, trainer and mostly a friend for life. Devastated to see him SOLD", before adding the hashtag "£mejoseandjonasnext", suggesting he, Enrique and winger Jonas Gutierrez could follow.

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