West Ham are carefully considering fan reaction to the possibility of signing controversial Joey Barton before deciding to make a firm move for the player.
As we revealed yesterday – and repeated by the London Evening Standard this afternoon – the chances of the Irons signing the controversial midfielder are rated at around 30 per cent by club negotiators.
The Hammers will only sign Barton on a ‘pay-as-you-play ‘ basis, and that’s only if the club, after taking fans’ views into account, believe it’s a deal worth pursuing. And it’s these obstacles that may persuade Barton to seek a home elsewhere.
At best, Barton is only seen as a short-term cover option until the Hammers compete a deal for Alex Song, ahead of the Barcelona player’s expected return to fitness around October.
A well-placed source told ClaretandHugh: “We are of course aware of the stuff knocking around on social media and obviously fans views are considered.
“There may or may not be a deal to be done but there’s a little way to go nd the chances remain as they were yesterday at about 30 per cent.”