The Last Word: Despite the paper talk, captain Dec is here to stay – for now!

We have no need to sell him at this point - another season could well see us progress even further

Declan’s future is never far from unwanted and inaccurate headlines usually from ‘hits hungry’ websites and newspapers. So far every ‘he’s off’’ story has bitten the dust as the Hammers’ fortunes have come out of almost permanent hiding.

The heaviest and most believable speculation began several months ago when the Daily Telegraph made a series of claims about a new contract over a couple of days. They all sounded spot on and may well – as most believed – have been originated by his Dad/agent Sean.

Among the claims made were that he had rejected a huge offer from the club and that a sell-on clause would be required in any future deal. That started a massive feeding frenzy among the media which has bored most of us ever since!

Since the Chelsea fiasco – as a result of the horrendous Russian invasion of Ukraine – then it’s been nothing but him being heavily linked with and likely to go to Old Trafford. God knows why he’d do that given the state of a club where a permanent manager seemingly can’t be found and a few less egos in the dressing room would be a result.

No approaches

ClaretandHugh has made several checks with newspaper friends recently and none can give any sort of update on the earlier Telegraph story – simply because there hasn’t been any approaches from anywhere on it. And it seems certain that Dec will certainly be here for what could well be another critical year at least given there’s two years left on his contract with a one-year option attached and the direction in which our club is heading.

We have no need to sell him at this point – another season could well see us progress even further and we are told that those around him now believe him to be as happy as he’s ever been at the club. As one looks at him after victories he’s beaming, in defeat he looks as miserable as it’s possible to be. He looks and feels like a proper West Ham boy.

West Ham will be putting an improved deal in front of him at the end of the season and in placing a reported £150 million fee on his head may have indicated that they are ready to offer the sort of wages that kind of figure demands.

It’s a fascinating scenario and nobody should be at all surprised if the captain puts pen to paper for another three or four years.

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