West Ham has so far found it difficult to grab their targets during the transfer window. The east London club is currently the only Premier League side to not officially sign a player yet this summer. The latest hiccup in West Ham’s transfer plans appears to be difficulty in signing Southampton’s James Ward-Prowse.

Recently relegated Southampton has reportedly placed a $38 million price tag on their captain. However, the Hammers are reluctant to trigger this fee. The Premier League club has so far seen two separate bids rejected for the England international. The latest offer was supposedly $31 million with add-ons included. It remains to be seen if David Moyes and company will go back for another bid, but West Ham has walked away for now.

Ward-Prowse has been one of the top set-piece specialists in the Premier League in recent years. In fact, the English midfielder has scored 17 career top-flight goals from free kicks. This is only one behind David Beckham’s Premier League record. A potential move back to the first division would put Beckham’s record under serious threat.

West Ham could have easily covered Ward-Prowse cost

The Hammers are certainly in need of reinforcements this summer. They have previously sold their former captain, Declan Rice, to Arsenal for up to $130 million. Rice’s departure leaves a massive hole in the middle of the pitch. Not only do they need to replace their best player, but West Ham needs to improve in other areas as well. The Hammers endured a tough 2022/23 domestic campaign, as they finished 14th in the top flight table.

Along with the Ward-Prowse situation, West Ham also saw another target slip through their fingertips. Manchester City youngster Carlos Borges was ready to sign with the Hammers for around $17 million earlier in the week. Nevertheless, Ajax swooped in and hijacked the deal by offering the Premier League champions extra money. The 19-year-old winger scored an impressive 29 goals last season with City’s U21 team.

Hammers could turn to USMNT midfielder next

West Ham has seen other bids for potential targets rejected this summer as well. Chelsea previously denied their $50 million offer for Conor Gallagher. Scott McTominay was also a potential option, but Manchester United supposedly asked the fellow Premier League for too much money. USMNT star Tyler Adams could be a target as well. The Hammers will have competition though, as Aston Villa and Chelsea are also in the mix for the American.