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The Hammers are facing competition from their London rivals in their bid to secure the services of the versatile Ajax forward

By Wayne Veysey | Chief Correspondent

Fulham and West Ham are battling it out to sign Ajax forward Miralem Sulejmani, understands.

The Dutch giants have signalled that they are prepared to cash in on the Serbia international before the transfer window closes.

West Ham have made a bid for the 23-year-old and a deal to take him to Upton Park is understood to be almost done.

But Fulham have entered the fray for the forward, who played under Martin Jol during the Craven Cottage manager’s 18 months in charge of the Amsterdam club.
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West Ham agreed a deal to sign the versatile forward on a season-long loan two years ago but it fell through after the Serbian was denied a work permit.

They have, however, reignited their interest in the wide attacker, who can operate on either side of a centre-forward, as boss Sam Allardyce attempts to bring greater creativity to his front line before Friday night’s deadline.

Marc Overmars, the former Arsenal winger who is now an Ajax director, has spoken in Holland of an approach for Sulejmani.

“It's a serious offer, but I can't mention the name of the club,” he said. 'Miralem knows about the interest.”

Jack Sullivan, the teenage son of Hammers chairman David Sullivan, tweeted earlier on Thursday that West Ham were pursuing a forward as news emerged that Nicky Maynard was heading for Cardiff City.

Sullivan said on Twitter: “We expect to sign a top, top class striker today. My Dad doesn’t give up.”

However, Jol is also a big fan of Sulejmani and is desperate to add some pace to his attack as he prepares to cover for the impending loss of Clint Dempsey, who is the subject of fresh interest from Liverpool.

The Dutchman has confirmed that Fulham are closing in on the signing of Dimitar Berbatov after he underwent a medical on Thursday.

But the west Londoners also want to add a wide attacker and central midfielder before the window closes.