West Ham close in deal for winger as Spearing joins Bolton
Stewart Downing's Liverpool FC career has been plunged into further doubt with West Ham United close to agreeing a fee for the England winger.
The Hammers are keen to reunite Downing with former Anfield team-mate Andy Carroll, for whom they splashed out £15million to sign earlier this summer.
Last month, Downing dismissed speculation of a possible move to Upton Park by stating he wanted to stay and fight for his starting role at Liverpool.
However, it has since emerged the Anfield outfit would be willing to listen to offers for the 29-year-old with Newcastle United monitoring the situation.
And that has prompted West Ham to return for talks over an offer for Downing, believed to be in the region of £5m-6m.
Downing impressed during the 4-1 friendly win against Valerenga in Oslo on Wednesday, but had previously seen his playing time restricted this pre-season.
His Liverpool career has been the subject of constant speculation since struggling to initially adjust following an £18.5m move from Aston Villa two years ago.
The winger was sidelined for much of the opening months of last season and was told by manager Brendan Rodgers he could leave during the January transfer window.
However, Downing forced his way back into the team during the second half of the campaign and recently said: “I have spoken to the manager and he’s told me that he’s happy for me to stay.”
One player definitely to have left Liverpool is Jay Spearing, who yesterday completed a move to Championship side Bolton Wanderers for an undisclosed fee.
Spearing spent most of last season on loan with the Trotters, featuring in 37 games, and Bolton manager Dougie Freedman had made capturing him on a permanent basis one of his highest priorities this summer.
Spearing, who has penned a four-year deal, endeared himself to the Bolton faithful last year which led to many fans chanting his name during the draw with Burnley last Saturday.“
Jay wanted to come here and wanted to play for the Bolton Wanderers jersey,” said Freedman. “He brings qualities to the football club both on and off the field.
“He turned down a few other clubs to come here and he knows and likes the style of our management team.”
Spearing, who made his Liverpool debut in a Champions League group game at PSV Eindhoven in December 2008, played 55 times for the Anfield outfit.
Meanwhile, Liverpool's Capital One Cup second round clash at home to League One side Notts County will be played on Tuesday, August 27 (kick-off 7.45pm).