Marseille have called for Dimitri Payet to stay at the club and await fresh contract terms, despite accepting a bid from Premier League side West Ham.
The French winger has been heavily linked with a move to London in recent weeks and Marseille released a statement on Thursday seemingly placing the ball in Payet’s court regarding his future.
While claiming that Payet had previously agreed to honour the remaining two years of his contract, Marseille expressed frustration at recent events – suggesting negotiations between the player and West Ham had taken place without their knowledge.
In addition, Marseille also said president Vincent Labrune would be willing to discuss fresh terms with Payet in July, once the club have honoured their financial obligations to the French football authorities.
“Olympique Marseille is clear that it has absolutely no intention to sell player Dimitri Payet,” read a statement released on the club’s official website.
“In early June, an agreement to this effect was found with Dimitri and his agent. Both sides agreed on this occasion that the OM playmaker would honor the last two years of the contract.
“On June 22, Dimitri’s agent requested a new meeting with president Vincent Labrune. At this meeting, he announced that he and his player had opened negotiations with West Ham, saying that the English club offered a six-year contract worth €30 million over that period to the player.
“Therefore, the agent demanded a huge and immediate revaluation of Dimitri Payet’s contract to remain at Marseille. Unable to meet this request, Olympique de Marseille, through its president, expressed surprise that negotiations were opened with another club without OM being warned.”
Marseille claim to have been pressed for a more urgent response from Payet’s agent when they agreed to review the 28-year-old’s contract terms in July.
Their statement continued: “Surprised by this ultimatum, the Marseille president decided after half a day of reflection to respond favourably to the English bid that was received [and let] the player face his responsibilities.”
Despite accepting the offer, Marseille have urged Payet to remain at the Stade Velodrome, stating the player could wait for new contract discussions “at a club he says he loves” or chase the “pot of gold” on offer at West Ham.
“OM obviously wants Dimitri to choose to stay in Marseille next season,” the statement concluded.
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