West Ham United manager Slaven Bilic has admitted Dimitri Payet could leave the club in the summer. The 28-year-old star is reportedly attracting interest from cross-city rivals Arsenal and Bilic is eager for the club to tie him down to a new contract as soon as possible.
The France international's agent is trying to negotiate a new deal worth £125,000-a-week ($180,000), according to The Mirror, which claims the West Ham hierarchy has been left staggered by Payet's demands. However, Bilic admits Payet is the club's best player and he is keen to ensure he extends his stay with the Hammers.
"We are moving and the club is moving, with the new stadium [West Ham move to the Olympic Stadium for next season], the revenue and everything," the West Ham boss explained. "But the most important move is to keep your best players and Dimitri Payet is our best player, I have no problem whatsoever saying that. And of course I would love to have him happy, long term, at the club.
"He signed only a few months ago but he has made a huge impact – a very, very huge impact – and while he has a long contract he is in a good position. It is not only the staff and the players but also the fans and the board, we all want to keep him for a long, long time."
Payet is reportedly a transfer target for Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger and Bilic admitted there is a chance the player could leave West Ham in the summer. "There is always a chance. Nowadays the contracts don't protect the other clubs from trying to get a player. Sometimes it unsettles the player, sometimes it gets them a new contract. Other times, the club sells the player," the West Ham manager explained.