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Gomez: the day of reckoning

Filed: Tuesday, 9th July 2019
By: Staff Writer

West Ham United's pursuit of Celta Vigo striker Maxi Gomez is thought to be nearing a conclusion.

Hammers representatives, including Director of Football Mario Husillos, have spent the last few days in Spain wrangling over the potential purchase of the 22-year-old.

Despite Celta having agreed terms with fellow La Liga side Valencia over a potential sale - a fee of €14.5 million plus (replacement striker) Santi Mina and the loan of Jorge Saenz - West Ham have reluctantly agreed to meet Gomez's €50million release clause.

However the terms on which the fee should be paid is understood to be the main sticking point at present.

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Whilst West Ham have offered to pay in instalments, Celta are insistent that the entire transfer fee should be paid, in full, in advance - something that United are currently unwilling to agree to.

And according to fresh reports emanating from Spain this morning, West Ham are understood to have been told to meet Celta's terms or remove themselves from the equation.

The transfer is said to have been further complicated by the involvement of Gomez's current representatives Stellar Football who, according to Super Deporte, have demanded a €3million fee to push the deal through.

The agency, headed by Jonathan Barnett, purchased Gomez's rights from former representative Marcelo Tejera for €1million just 12 months ago and would prefer their client to sign for the Hammers, who are willing to meet their demands.

As a result the agents have thus far refused to enter talks with Valencia, for whom Gomez is reported to have expressed a preference to join, despite Los Ches having agreed a fee with his current club.

"Celta is respecting the agreement with Valencia, they know we are not going to negotiate with the English club for Maxi, but we can do little more," a Vigo source told Super Deporte on Monday.

"We have spoken with Valencia, but if they [West Ham] pay their clause and Maxi accepts to go to the Premier League, we we can’t prevent it."

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Yet Barnett has denied reports that his agency are stalling a potential deal with Valencia due to the commission payment, calling reports "absolute rubbish and a lie."

"It all depends on who makes a sufficiently acceptable offer [to Celta]," Barnett insisted. "If the two clubs meet that requirement, the player will decide."

West Ham are understood to have offered Gomez a salary worth in the region of £6million per year, a similar wage to that previously earned by both Andy Carroll and Marko Arnautovic who have both now left the club.

In another twist, West Ham's Director of Football is reported to have spoken to Valencia about the potential sale of Javier Hernandez who is available for transfer this summer having just one year left on his current three-year contract, signed in 2017.

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