An indisputable starter this season at Saint-Etienne, Kevin Malcuit’s reputation in European football is certainly increasing, with rumours that even Manchester United are interested in the player’s profile.
However, if reports in France from January ring true, it’s West Ham who currently have the upper hand in what could become an interesting summer for the 25-year-old.
The Hammers reportedly had two bids rejected in January (worth €8m and €10m) respectively, which is understandable considering Saint-Etienne certainly wouldn’t have wanted such an important player to leave midseason.
The right-back, equally adept at attacking and defending, is currently tied to the Ligue 1 side until 2019, and Christophe Galtier is unlikely to let a key member of his defence go without a fight.
Sky Sports on Tuesday have reported that Slaven Bilic expects to sign Malcuit for £10m in the summer, with Saint-Etienne reportedly not against a sale.
While this would probably be enough in normal circumstances, the fact that the destination would be the Premier League could force the French club to ask for a little bit more.
Considering the likes of Benjamin Mendy left Marseille for Monaco last season for £11m and Djibril Sidibé transferred to the same club for £12.75m, Saint-Etienne, knowing their man would be ideal for West Ham, could end up asking for somewhere around £13m.
With two years left on his contract, age on his side and a growing reputation, such an amount would probably be considered a good deal for both clubs, and a very realistic one at that.
Furthermore, that extra £2-3m on top of Sky Sports’ reported price could mean an extra player for a team like Saint-Etienne.
It might still happen at £10m, but don’t be shocked, were a deal to go through, if it’s for a little bit more.