Struggling LaLiga club Real Sociedad have identified Emmanuel Emenike as a prime transfer target in the summer transfer window as the Basque side move to solve their goal-scoring woes.
The Royals, who are placed 12th in the Spanish topflight , have hit the back of the net 42 times so far this term, with club top scorer Imanol Agirretxe (13 goals) and Jonathas (seven goals) scoring 20 goals between them.
With Italian Serie A giants Inter Milan reportedly set to bid for their 27-year-old former Arsenal attacker Carlos Vela in the summer, Sociedad manager Eusebio Sacristan is said to be keen on signing Emenike, who is going through a difficult loan spell at West Ham.
The Hammers manager Bilic signed the 28-year-old striker on loan from Turkish outfit Fenerbahce until the end of the season during the January transfer window, with the Premier League club having the option of making the deal permanent.
But the former Nigeria striker has yet to repay Bilic’s faith since his arrival at Upton Park – after scoring just two goals in 13 appearances for the European football chasing London club.
The two goals came in the same game against Blackburn Rovers in the FA Cup at Ewood Park on February 21.
Former Croatia manager Bilic appears to have made a U-turn on Emenike’s permanent stay at the club after he denied a clause in the former Spartak Moscow’s striker’s contract forcing the Hammers to sign him for €11m if he makes 10 Premier League appearances.
Now, all the signs are pointing to a permanent Hammers departure for the South Africa 2013 Africa Cup of Nations winner this summer.
However, reports say Sociedad boss Sacristan wants the well-travelled forward at Anoeta Stadium, hoping to save the former Spartak Moscow player’s career.
According to Espiritu Deportivo on Thursday, the Basque side are looking into the possibility of signing Emenike on the cheap – as they worry about the future of some of their star players.
But HITC reports Sociedadwill face stiff competition from clubs in the Middle East and China.
Abu Dhabi outfit Al Ain were forced to end Emenike’s loan deal before the January transfer window after the player, who represented Nigeria at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, scored just seven goals for them in the Arabian Gulf League.