Dimitri Payet deleted from West Ham Whatsapp group and has car vandalised as he nears Marseille return

Payet is being made to train with the under-23s by Slaven Bilic

Jack Austin@jackaustin_1
Friday 20 January 2017 11:32
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Dimitri Payet is expected to move this month
Dimitri Payet is expected to move this month

On-strike West Ham star Dimitri Payet has been removed from the players’ Whatsapp group and had his car vandalised as his return to France edges towards inevitability.

The 29-year-old is trying to force through a move to former club Marseille and has refused to play for the first team, resulting in his relegation to train with the under-23s.

That has led to the Frenchman becoming ostracised by his teammates, with captain Mark Noble last week claiming he hadn’t spoken to Payet for a number of weeks and the midfielder has been left out of bonding dinners and team meetings.

Noble and James Collins reportedly used Whatsapp to tell Payet he was no longer considered part of the team, with the West Ham group administrator Pedro Obiang telling him he was not welcome to be part of the team conversation any longer and deleted his number.

Payet’s car was also targeted by vandals outside his home, with suggestions that a brick was thrown through the window.

Marseille and West Ham have been locked in talks since Slaven Bilic publically revealed Payet wanted to leave the club and the Ligue 1 side are set to come back with a third bid, this time of £25m, after seeing their first two rejected.

However, West Ham will not sell on the cheap, given Payet only signed a new contract less than 12 months ago.

Bilic said: “Dimi took his stance clearly. We took our stand very clearly and it stays the same.

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“We are not going to sell our best players on the cheap just because someone wants to sign them or even because they want to go home. We know the market. Like everybody, he has his price.

“The ball is in Marseille’s court. They expressed interest, now they should act.”

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