This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict‘ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
West Ham have set their sights on Millwall playmaker Jed Wallace, as an exclusive FLW report suggested on Friday.
It is understood that Burnley, Newcastle United, Crystal Palace, and Brentford, are all applying Premier League competition, whilst Rangers and Celtic are also monitoring the 27-year-old’s situation.
West Brom are also providing divisional interest in Wallace, who will see his Millwall contract expire in under a year.
Wallace has emerged as a talismanic figure at The Den in recent years, chipping in with 39 goal contributions over the last two seasons.
The attacker has added three goals and two assists to his Millwall tally in six Championship games thus far, proving to still be just as influential.
The Lions signed the 27-year-old from Wolves in 2017, following a move to the Midlands that did not work out.
Here, we take a look at how some of the writers here at FLW view West Ham’s interest in Wallace and whether it is a good potential move…
I think that’s too big a step for Wallace.
There’s no doubting that he’s a fantastic player in the Championship but to move to West Ham would be a big leap. They are now a side that are pushing for Europe and I can’t imagine Wallace would be a regular for them, even if he would be able to do a job on occasions.
You could argue that he would beef up the squad but the Hammers should be looking at players who are going to upgrade the XI and I don’t think Wallace falls into that category. They had a positive recent window where they targeted quality additions and they need to do that moving forward.
Wallace certainly has the ability to play in the Premier League but David Moyes is well stocked for wide men and attacking midfielders, and I don’t think the Millwall man is better than what the Scotsman already has.
This feels like a Jarrod Bowen-esque signing for the Hammers – and one that could pay dividends.
He currently has one year left on his deal at The Den – and with the Lions failing to agree fresh terms with their star man thus far – he could potentially move to the London Stadium on a pre-contract agreement.
On a free transfer, why not give Wallace a go? He’s unlikely to demand high wages and considering his goal contributions for Millwall in recent seasons, he would be a useful squad player in the capital.
Considering how key he has been to the second-tier side in recent seasons, you almost feel he deserves his move to the Premier League after dropping down to Portsmouth before working his way up to Millwall and now potentially to the top flight of English football.
He’s unlikely to start most games – but he will give West Ham another option to utilise down the wing and as previous seasons have shown across the Premier League and EFL – it’s this squad depth that can often prove to be crucial.
You have to remember they’re taking part in the Europa League this season too, in what will be a demanding 2021/22 campaign for David Moyes’ side.
Jed Wallace is a sensible transfer target for West Ham United and he is definitely a player who is ready for the step up to the Premier League.
I do not see the practicalities of the deal to be honest though, the Lions are unlikely to sell Wallace in January and would prefer to keep his services at the club and let him go for free in the summer.
Wallace said last week on the Not The Top 20 Podcast that he is committed to the Lions and would like to play in the Premier League with them.
Signing a contract extension seems very unlikely but leaving for the Hammers would leave a sour taste. It would be a good signing yes but with no guarantees he will play regularly, I do not see this one as a goer.