West Ham are on the verge to complete the signing of Valencia academy starlet Toni Martinez, according to reports in Spain. Radio Taranjona claims that the Hammers will pay up to 3€m (£2.35, $3.3m) to secure the services of the 18-year-old striker while Super Deporte add that the deal between the clubs is so advanced that the player has already bid his farewell to the rest of his teammates ahead of his imminent departure to the Premier League.
Martinez is regarded as one of the biggest jewels to emerge from the prolific Valencia academy, which in recent years have overseen the emergence of European top stars like Manchester City's David Silva, Barcelona's Jordi Alba, or Real Madrid's Isco.
The talented striker committed his future to Valencia in the summer of 2015 after signing a new three-year-deal with hopes to become into a regular starter for the second team, the step to break through into Gary Neville's side. However, the teenager has since grown frustrated over the lack of playing time after the second team bolstered the attack with two new additions.
Yet the striker has continued proving his worth in the youth ranks, being a crucial part of the Valencia side who were controversially knocked out by Chelsea in the Uefa Youth League after a spot-kick in the penalty shootout was wrongly disallowed during the last-16 match at the Cobham training ground.
West Ham have taken advantage of the situation to temp him to move to the English football. Radio Taronja suggest that the deal is on the verge to be completed in the coming hours after Valencia have already accepted the offer of the Hammers to part ways with the starlet for around €3m.
Super Deporte claims that the club are still discussing the final terms of the deal but confirms that the negotiations are so advances that earlier on Tuesday (29 March) Martinez went to the club training ground to say goodbye to his teammates. The Valencia-based publication, meanwhile, claims that the La Liga side are also on alert over Manchester United interest in first-team star Andre Gomes.
Martinez, should the reports be true, would follow in the footsteps of former Valencia academy star Pedro Chirivella, who in 2013 made the move to the English football to join Liverpool.