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James Ward-Prowse: West Ham end interest in Southampton captain days before Championship season

West Ham hold positive talks over Southampton captain James-Ward Prowse; Conor Gallagher also on radar but has two years left on his Chelsea deal; Watch the Championship season opener on Friday as Sheffield Wednesday host Southampton from 7pm; kick-off 8pm

Has James Ward-Prowse played his final game in Southampton colours with relegation looming?
Image: West Ham were hoping to make James Ward-Prowse their first signing of the summer

West Ham have ended their interest in Southampton's James Ward-Prowse due to the price the Championship side are asking for their captain.

The Hammers had a £20m bid for the 28-year-old rejected earlier this summer and had been expected to return with a higher bid.

But the club will now focus their attentions elsewhere as they look to add to their ranks to fill the void created by the departure of Declan Rice to Arsenal for £105m last month.

Southampton boss Russell Martin has already admitted the Saints may end up beginning their Championship season, which kicks off at Sheffield Wednesday live on Sky Sports this Friday, without a number of players who could be sold by the end of August.

West Ham's latest transfer headache comes after they saw a £40m bid for Chelsea and England midfielder Conor Gallagher rejected.

Conor Gallagher is attracting transfer interest from West Ham
Image: West Ham's bid for Chelsea midfielder Conor Gallagher was rejected

The 23-year-old has two years left on his contract at Stamford Bridge and it is believed Chelsea would be open to extending it.

They have yet to go back in for Gallagher after seeing that bid knocked back, and are understood to be reluctant to go any higher at this stage.

Also See:

Fulham's Joao Palhinha is still an option - but a potential move has been complicated by his shoulder injury and Fulham's asking price.

Initial talks with Manchester United have indicated a move for Scott McTominay could prove out of West Ham's price range.

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Speaking in June, Gallagher reiterated his desire to stay at Chelsea and says he is looking forward to working under Mauricio Pochettino

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Who will be on the move this summer when the transfer window opens on June 14 and closes at 11pm on September 1 in England and midnight in Scotland?

Keep up to date with all the latest transfer news and rumours in our dedicated Transfer Centre blog on Sky Sports' digital platforms. You can also catch up with the ins, outs and analysis on Sky Sports News.

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