A dogfight has ensued among clubs to sign Stoke City‘s custodian Jack Butland and the latest club to join the race are West Ham United. According to reports, they have made a tentative enquiry for the 25-year-old stopper as they look to boost their goalkeeping options for next season. Butland has been one of the few bright sparks at Stoke who suffered the heartbreak of relegation last season.
With Stoke going down, it is expected that they will have to sell some of their key assets as they won’t be receiving the financial benefits of playing in the Premier League anymore. Butland has been one of their key players over the years and the Stoke fans will be dreading to see their star stopper leave.
Butland managed just six clean sheets this term in the Premier League but that was largely down to the poor overall defensive performance of the team. West Ham can give him a way out and a chance to continue playing in the English top flight. However, there are other clubs who are vying for his signature and Chelsea have also announced their interest in him as they are set to lose Thibaut Courtois.
West Ham has been struggling in the goalkeeping department for quite a few years now. In the previous campaign, they acquired the services of Joe Hart on loan from Manchester City. However, the veteran Englishman failed to impress at the Olympic Stadium and was replaced by Adrian in the latter half of the season.
It is clear that the Hammers won’t make a permanent move for Hart anymore and they will need a goalkeeper to replace Adrian, who on a bad day can make a costly error or two. Butland will surely boost Manuel Pellegrini’s options and it is likely that the English international will be his first choice starter.
It remains to be seen whether the East London outfit will cough up the quoted amount but such is the day and age now that one needs to pay astronomical figures to land their targets. Butland is on the plane to Russia for 2018 FIFA World Cup. If he goes on to start for the Three Lions and has a good World Cup, his stocks will certainly rise further.