Reported Arsenal target Mohamed Diame has dismissed speculation that he is attempting to pursue a move from West Ham. A story in the Daily Mail yesterday claimed that Diame was prepared to report the club to FIFA as West Ham were refusing to honor the £3.5 million release clause in his contract.
But in an article posted on the official West Ham Web site, Diame states that he is happy to remain at the club he joined on a free transfer from Wigan last summer.
"I know there are people out there saying things about me but I have spoken with the manager and told him that I want to stay here," Diame said. "I know the club want to keep me too so I will continue to give my best for them.
“I knew when I signed that West Ham were going to make their mark on the Premier League. Since I came here I am enjoying every game I play on the pitch. I think I made a good choice because I'm very happy at this club."
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger recently spoke in glowing terms about Diame and it has been widely reported that the Senegal international is considered a strong option to add dynamism to the Gunners’ midfield.
Yet West Ham boss Sam Allardyce has claimed that there have yet to be any offers for the 25-year-old.
"I don't think there's anything in the story," Allardyce said. "For me, it's just about agents being disruptive. Mo Diame has not been to me and said he is unhappy in any way.
"We've had no bids from any of the clubs that have been rumored in the papers. He's our player and hopefully come 1 February he will still be our player.”
If Arsenal make a bid that triggers Diame’s buyout clause in the next week, it remains to be seen if Diame will be so wholehearted in his commitment to West Ham.
Roma goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg has also been linked with a January move to Arsenal, but it appears that the Dutch international will be staying in the Italian capital for the time being.
There have been reports of late that Wenger is after an experienced goalkeeper with doubts persisting about the development of young Pole Wojciech Szczesny. But, according to his agent, Stekelenburg, 30, has yet to receive any offers, despite also reportedly being on the radar of Fulham.
"At the moment there are just rumors and speculation,” Rob Jansen told CalcioMercato.
"We have yet to receive a concrete offer, so it is therefore probable that he will stay at Roma in January rather than leave.
"We know what is moving in the goalkeeping market, but nothing has been decided."
Arsenal are also believed to be seeking more attacking options, with David Villa and Atletico Madrid’s Adrian Lopez two of the names thought to be in Wenger’s sights. Another name has also been mooted by the Daily Express in Fiorentina’s Stevan Jovetic.
The Montenegrin was linked to the Gunners last summer, while Juventus and Manchester City are also believed to be long-time admirers.
Although it is claimed that Arsenal are preparing a serious offer for the 23-year-old, Fiorentina have continually reiterated that they are not prepared to sell their leading asset. Particularly with the Viola still in the running for a Champions League spot, it is hard to envision anything other than an absurdly large offer tempting them into selling Jovetic in January.
It would appear that Wenger is already looking ahead to the summer, with the Daily Mirror reporting that Arsenal and Liverpool are set to contest the £8 million signing of Swansea defender Ashley Williams come the end of the season.
Wenger is said to be a big fan of the 28-year-old Wales international after having him watched on several occasions this season.