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The Hammers have moved in to pole position to relocate to the site after a prolonged legal battle, although London Mayor Boris Johnson insists no deal has yet been agreed.

West Ham United has been named as the preferred bidder for the Olympic Stadium.

The Hammers have been embroiled in a battle over the vacant ground for much of the last three years, with competition from Tottenham and opposition from Leyton Orient two of the main obstacles to the club's efforts to relocate to the stadium.

However, the London Legacy Development Corporation has today confirmed that the club is the "Highest-Ranked Bidder" for the site, although Mayor of London Boris Johnson has stressed that no deal has yet been struck with the club, insisting: "I can see a great future for stadium with or without association football."

In a statement released on the club's official website, vice-chairman Karen Brady said: "In selecting West Ham United, the LLDC have secured a long-term viable financial future for the Park. On behalf of West Ham United, I feel privileged to have been granted the responsibility to play a key part in delivering a true Games legacy."

Hammers co-owners David Gold and David Sullivan also released a joint-statement, adding: ''We believe that this move... will play a huge part in helping to realize our ambitious vision to move the club to the next level on behalf of our fantastic and deserving fans.

"We are ambitious for our great club and aim to set the benchmark for visiting away and neutral football supporters from across the globe to come and enjoy the iconic stadium and be part of our Premier League club experience.''

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