West Ham United seem set to prise Jack Colback away from Sunderland. The midfielder is a free agent and finds himself in demand from not only his current manager, Gus Poyet, but also Newcastle United and Swansea City.
Sam Allardyce, though, is prepared to offer Colback a four-year contract worth around £50,000 a week – a sum his rivals will not compete with and which would quadruple the 24-year-old’s current deal.
In the wake of their escape from relegation, Sunderland are fighting hard to keep the boyhood Newcastle fan – who was receptive to a switch to St James’ Park – but fear they may have lost a player they attempted to tie to a new contract throughout much of the season just ended. Indeed the only hope Poyet and Pardew can cling to is Colback’s reluctance to relocate his wife and two small children from the north-east.
Allardyce believes the Tynesider, regularly watched by Everton last season, as precisely the sort of technically adroit midfielder who can assist him in his attempts to appease both fans and the Upton Park board by making West Ham rather more easy on the eye.
Although, at first glance, the package on offer seems extraordinarily generous West Ham believe the lack of a transfer fee justifies such investment on wages.