The Nigerian Tribune is saying that Obafemi Martins could be loaned to West Ham United during the MLS offseason. This is not the first rumor of Oba being linked to a team in Europe, and like Dempsey it probably will not be the last. In fact Clint has also been linked to the Hammers and their bubbles.
The speculation comes about as manager Sam Allardyce is in search for a genuine goal-scorer during the winter transfer window, following the club's recent miserable league run, and a loan deal for Martins could well be completed during the New Year.
Martins seems driven to make a final run at the World Cup and representing Nigeria. While a sales is unlikely, considering the transfer fee and salary, a loan to a more internationally respected side and league could give him the respect of his National Team and a recall to the greatest sporting event for soccer players in the world. A brief loan to a club like the Hammers would help Oba without hurting the Sounders significantly.
This speculation comes just under a day after Joe Roth seemed to call Martins' work ethic into question during the End of Year Business Meeting. Previously Adrian Hanauer had indicated that Oba was one of the players that the club would build around, though he did not call him part of the leadership core.