West Ham’s wantaway playmaker Dimitri Payet has moved a step closer to rejoining French side Marseille after the two clubs agreed a fee of £25million.
The 29-year-old has expressed his desire to leave the Hammers and has not appeared for Slaven Bilic’s side since refusing to play against Crystal Palace on January 14.
A statement on West Ham’s Twitter page said: “West Ham United can confirm that a £25m fee has today been agreed for the transfer of Dimitri Payet to Olympique de Marseille.”
France international Payet, who arrived from Marseille in the summer of 2015, was a big hit in his first season with the London club, scoring 12 times in 38 appearances.
He also agreed a lucrative new contract until 2021 before starring for his country as they reached the final of Euro 2016 on home soil.
But things turned sour earlier this month when Payet angered his boss Bilic by requesting a transfer and declining to be picked against Palace.
His wish now looks to have been granted and a return to Ligue 1 imminent, despite the Hammers’ initial reluctance to sell him.
Payet, who has also played for Nantes, St Etienne and Lille, had been forced to train away from the first team as the saga surrounding his future dragged on.
The Premier League club, meanwhile, have suffered no ill-effects on the pitch, winning against the Eagles and following it up with a 3-1 success at Middlesbrough to continue their climb up the table after a slow start to the season.
Boss Bilic has also been able to strengthen his squad with the acquisitions of Southampton defender Jose Fonte and Hull winger Robert Snodgrass.
Payet signalled his exit from English football by posting on Twitter a photograph of a small jet, as he made his journey to France.
He captioned it “On rentre a la maison”, which translates as “We’re going home”.