Guillermo Maripan – rated at around the £12 million mark looks booked for a summer switch to the Irons.
Hammers boss Manuel Pellegrini has now firmly set his sights on the Chile international and director of football Mario Husillos is believed to be on the case.
The Alaves central defender has been mooted as a summer arrival for several days as the boss looks to strengthen at the back.
Should he arrive it will mean the squad is carrying five central defenders in Fabian Balbuena, Issa Diop, Winston Reid, Angelo Ogbonna and Maripan.
And that would leave the way clear for a summer departure of either Reid or Ogbonna with the New Zealander favourite for the exit door.
When we approached a Hammers highly placed source there was absolutely no denial of the club’s interest and it was clearly confirmed that a new central defender would be on the way to the London Stadium.
And Alaves will have problems rejecting the cash on offer as one of La Liga’s less well off clubs once the Irons make their move through Husillos.