West Ham will have become accustomed to spending the past few weeks in the gossip pages, with manager Slaven Bilic seeing his future come under scrutiny, but bigger reports have floated around this weekend.

The Daily Express claimed both David Sullivan and David Gold are keen to sell part of their shares at the East London side but intend to stay on the club’s board.

With the Hammers only recently moving to the London Stadium and having endured a difficult campaign in the home of London’s 2012 Olympics, a potential sale would have a huge impact.

However, Sullivan has moved quickly to address the rumours of a possible sale and told the club’s official website that the claims are ‘utterly false’:

“It is no secret that both David Gold and I see our long term futures as custodians of West Ham United,”

“We have never once viewed West Ham United as a short term project and plan to be here for many, many years, bringing further progress to the Club on and off the pitch, and success to our loyal supporters.”

“It disappoints me to see an article published that is so utterly false.”

The statement is an important clarification of the club’s future ahead of a crucial end to the season, as the Hammers sit eight points clear of the relegation zone with six games to go.

The Hammers travel to rock-bottom Sunderland this weekend, before testing clashes with Everton, Stoke, Tottenham, Liverpool and Burnley.