AFC Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe confirmed following the defeat to Manchester United that West Ham had made a transfer bid for both Callum Wilson and Matt Ritchie.
On Monday evening, Sports Journalist Pete O’Rourke posted on Twitter…
Bournemouth have rejected £25m bid from West Ham for Callum Wilson and Matt Ritchie and told them the duo are not for sale. #WHUFC #afcb
Soon after that report, Sky Sports ‘sources’ also reported the same transfer offer but added…
‘at the moment, (West Ham) are not planning to make a further offer.
Callum Wilson had impressed during the earlier part of the Premier League campaign, scoring a memorable hat-trick against West Ham United to record the Cherries first ever top flight victory.
He unfortunately went on to miss around seven months of the season with a knee injury.
Matt Ritchie has also enjoyed the step up to the Premier League following promotion, scoring the Cherries goal of the season at home to Sunderland and also impressing on the international stage, winning the goal of the year award for Scotland.
The duo cost the Cherries a combined fee of less than £3million when they joined from Coventry City and Swindon Town respectively.
Howe denied that the offer was £25million, but confirmed that the Cherries had rejected the offer and admitted his disappointment in the timing of West Ham’s bid, just a day after the bomb scare at Old Trafford and hours before travelling back to the north west for the hastily rearranged fixture.
Howe told the Daily Echo after the game with Manchester United…
“We had a bid yesterday evening. The disappointing thing from my perspective is why it came in the day before a game.
“It was our last game of the season and they had all summer to bid for our players. I don`t understand that.
“They are two players in the squad who were due to play and there was a lot of speculation around their futures. I thought that was bizarre. The bid was rejected and we have no intention to sell.”
“We don`t need to sell. We have a really ambitious owner and want to try to improve our squad, not weaken it. I think that is the clear message from us…’
Let’s be realistic. If we get through the summer without losing any of our key players we will be very lucky. Players’ heads will be turned by big salary increases, a move to London, career progression etc, and not all of them will have the sense to stay put in B’th. A footballer’s career is short, and many believe the grass is greener (when it isn’t). If you were Callum and were offered £££ to go to West Ham or Spurs, you would be mad not to consider it seriously. If the price is right, he’s off. That’s football. In the same way we will no doubt raid lower league clubs for the likes of Lewis Cook.
IMO we could afford to lose Ritchie. As talented as he is, he is not the heartbeat of the team, and has struggled at times this season. Surman or Arter would be bigger losses. Wilson is of course the big one to keep, but I think we will ultimately lose that battle. Maybe not this summer, more likely in January if he starts next season well. I still believe Afobe will be huge for us – look what Eddie has done with King this year. – Join the conversation here.
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