Johnny Heitinga to make switch to West Ham

[one_fourth last=”no”]File:West Ham United FC.svg[/one_fourth]Everton defender Johnny Heitinga is set to make a move to the English capital with Upton Park his final destination. The Dutchman has rarely featured in new Everton manager Roberto Martínez’s side and he feels his place in the Dutch squad for the upcoming World Cup Finals in Brazil is under threat.

Heitinga has failed to clock up a single minute in the Premier League this season under Martínez and his only game time for The Toffees this campaign has come in the Capital One Cup, the defender making just two appearances. Sky Sports is reporting that West Ham co-owners David Sullivan and David Gold are ready to dip into their pockets and take over Heitinga’s £65,000-a-week contract.

Big Sam has been told by owners Sullivan and Gold that he must avoid relegation with the Hammers at all costs and they are willing to back him in the January transfer window, a goal scorer also high on the list of priorities at Upton Park. Allardyce knows a solid defence is key to staying up and is seeking to strengthen his back line with James Collins, James Tomkins and Winston Reid all recently picking up injuries. Allardyce is confident the 30-year-old commanding centre back can go can straight into his first team.

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Heitinga, who has been capped 87 times by the Netherlands,  has also attracted interest from Serie A with both Napoli and Fiorentina interested in the player. However the Dutchman has acclimatised to life and is settled in England, and his preferred option is to stay in the Premiership.

Originally signed by David Moyes, Johnny Heitinga has 114 Everton appearances to his name, scoring 2 goals for the club since arriving at Goodison Park from Atletico Madrid in 2009 for a transfer fee of around £5m. According to Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf, Fulham and Norwich are also said to be keen in securing the defenders signature but the Hammers are favourites to sign him.

Heitinga recently told Voetbal International:  “I am flattered with the interest of West Ham. Since this week the market is open and it’s clear that I have to make an important decision. The chance of playing more minutes is the most important. I want to be at the World Cup and, to realise that, I have to play. Only then can I make it difficult for [Netherlands coach] Louis van Gaal.”

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