West Ham's move for Lescott given hope

Manchester City could be repared to let the England international centre-back move to Upton Park before the window shuts if they can land Porto defender Eliaquim Mangala
By Paul Clennam

West Ham’s hopes of signing Manchester City defender Joleon Lescott could be resurrected before the close of the transfer window on Friday.

The 31-year-old has already agreed in principle to join West Ham’s battle against relegation, having been told the east Londoners will match his £90,000-a-week wages until the end of the season, at which time they will offer him a three-year contract on £50,000-a-week should they stay up.

6/4 West Ham are 6/4 with Paddy Power to be relegated
However, City have been reluctant to sanction a sale until they bring in a replacement, for fear that their squad could be stretched in the second half of the season.

It is understood, though, that the club are increasingly keen to grant Lescott’s wish to leave for more regular first-team football. The former England international’s professional approach to training and commitment to the club has ensured a sympathetic view of his situation among the club’s hierarchy.

And City’s ambitious pursuit of Porto defender Eliaquim Mangala, as revealed by Goal, could also speed up Lescott’s departure as boss Manuel Pellegrini looks to strengthen his defensive options.

The Eastlands outfit have launched a stunning £38 million bid to bring the 22-year-old Frenchman to the club this week as they look to step up their title pursuit in the second half of the season.

It is thought such a move still has a long way to go before completion, with Porto mindful that a bidding war this summer could ensue if they hang on to Mangala, with Chelsea and Manchester United also having shown interest.

Still, Lescott’s camp are hopeful a resolution can be found either way, even with just over two days left of the window.