West Ham have taken the first step in their pursuit of OGC Nice striker Alassane Pléa by submitting a £27m bid to the French club, but the Hammers will face competition from Tottenham and Fulham in the race for his signature, according to reports.
The 25-year-old is coming off the back of his most fruitful season at the Allianz Riviera, where he scored 21 goals and claimed seven assists across all competitions. Pléa was directly involved in as many goals with the club as his strike partner, Mario Balotelli.
But Pléa is now being tipped to leave France this summer and although he has attracted interest from across Europe, the Premier League appears to be his most likely destination.
A handful of clubs have already been linked with the forward, but West Ham have submitted a £27m bid, confirmed by Sky Sports journalist Kaveh Solhekol, in an attempt to scare off competition from their domestic rivals.
The Hammers are looking to rebuild their squad ahead of the new campaign after appointing former Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini as their new manager.
West Ham United have made bid worth £27m for Nice forward Alassane Pléa— Kaveh Solhekol (@SkyKaveh) July 1, 2018
The club have already made three defensive signings this summer, bringing Ryan Fredericks and Łukasz Fabiański to London Stadium, but their most high profile signing to date is that of Toulouse star Issa Diop.
A report from the Sun claims that Premier League newbies Fulham are eyeing a move for Pléa as an alternative to their top target Aleksandar Mitrović. The Serbian forward spent the second half of last season on loan at Craven Cottage from Newcastle United.
Pléa has also been linked with moves across Europe this summer. Most notably the Frenchman was rumoured to be keen on following former Nice manager Lucien Favre to Germany, where the 60-year-old has just been appointed as the new boss at Borussia Dortmund.