(Reuters) - West Ham United have released several players to generate funds and open a place for a quality central midfielder that can take the team to the next level, manager Slaven Bilic has said.
Currently, Mark Noble and Pedro Obiang are West Ham’s two senior central midfielders, while Bilic has also utilised 21-year-old Edimilson Fernandes and 18-year-old Declan Rice in the position.
Media reports say West Ham are close to signing Sporting Lisbon holding midfielder William Carvalho but Bilic provided no updates about the 25-year-old, saying the club wanted to recruit for a specific position rather than a specific player.
“We need someone to boost our team, quality and everything” Bilic told reporters on Thursday. “We need that position and that is why we have offloaded some players to get the budget for him.
“I am not talking about the player (Carvalho), I am talking about the player for that position. The quality player not the quantity one. It is not easy to get them but we are doing our best.”
Six players have departed West Ham in the current transfer window with the London club signing five new players, including winger Marko Arnautovic, striker Javier Hernandez and defender Pablo Zabaleta.
West Ham will be looking for their first league win when they travel to Newcastle United on Saturday.
Reporting by Aditi Prakash in Bengaluru