West Ham are looking to significantly improve their ranks after a disappointing season and it seems they’re desperate to take advantage of relegated sides.

The Hammers have already been linked with the services of Stoke City trio Jack Butland, Joe Allen and Xherdan Shaqiri – but reports now add a fourth player to the mix.

According to The Mail (live blog 12.08pm), West Ham are keen on bolstering their defensive ranks with the addition of Stoke defender Ryan Shawcross.

The 30-year-old centre-half has spent over a decade with the Potters, who he now captains, but could look for an exit following the drop to the Championship.

Stoke will be determined not to sell but West Ham’s search for an experienced defender could prove difficult to rebuff, with the Hammers already improving their defence with the addition of Ryan Fredericks.

The Hammers are also set to lose veteran defender James Collins on a free transfer, while question marks have also hovered over the head of New Zealand skipper Winston Reid.