Exclusive: West Ham amongst clutch of clubs chasing outstanding 20-year-old

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Former Motherwell right-back, Max Johnston, is interesting a number of clubs this summer including Premier League outfit, West Ham United.

The 20-year-old is currently plying his trade at Austrian outfit, Sturm Graz, and according to an interview he gave to The National, appears to be enjoying himself.

West Ham face competition to land Max Johnston

“The city is beautiful, Graz is amazing. Moving away is something I always wanted to do and just see the world and I’ve been really lucky to move to such an amazing place,” he was quoted as saying.

“I had a chat with the manager (Christian Ilzer) and he really sold it to me. Once I went over, I understood how big the club is, I really enjoy the style of play and the fan base is amazing.

“The fans are unbelievable. They travel everywhere, they are singing for the whole 90 minutes, if you concede a goal they sing louder so obviously that’s amazing.

“But the whole culture, how the club is run, is really professional and the manager is really professional, really big on keeping the mind-set right and of course, we are chasing Salzburg now.

“I’m still loving it. I’m starting to get into the team a bit more now, which is a lot more enjoyable for me. I’m still young, only 20 years old. I’ve got so much to learn. I feel I am improving which is what I’m looking to do and I am enjoying it.”

However, he would seem to have one eye on international recognition, and he’s watched as other players have gone on to bigger and better things after playing abroad.

“You saw how well Aaron Hickey has done (abroad) and now he is playing in the Premier League and Lewis Ferguson is flying just now,” he added.

That could mean that the Hammers might well be successful in their pursuit of the player, though they face stiff competition for his services.

According to CaughtOffside sources with knowledge of the situation, Leicester City, Fulham and Everton are also monitoring things at present.

Leicester’s scouts have watched many of the Scottish player’s matches this season and have prepared a report for his transfer, though this might now be complicated by Chelsea’s pursuit of Foxes manager, Enzo Maresca.

All of the clubs mentioned are at least expecting to check on the player’s situation again soon, with an opening offer of around £1m set to start the bidding.

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