West Ham are considering Preston North End goalkeeper Declan Rudd as a possible target, if their move for Middlesbrough’s Darren Randolph falls through, a report from Football Insider has claimed.
Randolph’s return to the Hammers is currently up in the air due to concerns over the 32-year-old’s fitness, and the Premier League side are said to be drawing up a list of other potential options to add to their ranks in that position.
According to the latest reports, one name that is on the list is Rudd.
The Preston stopper has been in impressive form this season, and is an ever-present in Alex Neil’s side during the current Championship campaign, helping North End to tenth in the second-tier standings.
Having previously spent time on loan at Deepdale from Norwich between 2013 and 2014, Rudd then returned to Preston on a permanent basis in 2017, and has made a total of 150 appearances in all competitions for the club across those two spells.
Rudd is however, out of contract at the end of the season, meaning he could leave Preston for free in the summer if no deal is agreed either way before that point.
As a result, it is thought that Preston could be tempted to part company with Rudd for a fee of around £750,000 this month.
This could prove to be a useful deal for West Ham.
Despite one or two nervous moments when it comes to dealing with crosses into the area, Rudd has generally been solid for North End this season, and has made some outstanding saves to keep them in games at times this year.
Add to that the fact that he looks as though he could be available on the cheap in the next few weeks, and this certainly seems to be an attractive proposition for the Hammers.
You feel Rudd too could be tempted by a return to the Premier League – where he never really got a chance with Norwich – meaning it could be hard for Preston to hold onto their number one if West Ham do make their move.