Report: West Ham scouted Mario Mandzukic during international break, would reunite with Bilic

West Ham United manager Slaven Bilic

West Ham United have reportedly scouted striker Mario Mandzukic.

West Ham United manager Slaven BilicWest Ham United manager Slaven Bilic

According to The Sun, West Ham United scouts watched Mario Mandzukic in action for Croatia against Northern Ireland over the international break.

The Hammers searched all summer for a top striker to take the club to the next level, but they failed to land a host of big names, and were left to take Jonathan Calleri and Simone Zaza on loan from Deportivo Maldonado and Juventus respectively.

Neither have scored in the Premier League so far, and whilst West Ham may end up avoiding a permanent deal for Zaza in order to send him back to Juventus, they could end up targeting another Juve striker.

The Sun report that West Ham scouted Juventus striker Mario Mandzukic over the international break, as he was in action for Croatia against Northern Ireland.

Croatia's Mario Mandzukic applauds fans after the gameCroatia's Mario Mandzukic applauds fans

Mandzukic, 30, hit 13 goals for Juventus last season following a move from Atletico Madrid, but saw Juve break their transfer record to sign Gonzalo Higuain over the summer, meaning competition for places has become even more fierce.

Now, West Ham may be looking to offer Mandzukic regular playing time as their first-choice striker, as he was watched by a Hammers scout earlier this month – but manager Slaven Bilic will know him very well.

Football - Soccer - Lazio v Juventus - Italian Serie AJuventus striker Mario Mandzukic

Bilic worked with Mandzukic during his time as Croatia manager, and even gave the striker his international debut back in 2007, with a reunion now wanted at the London Stadium.

Whether a reunion with Bilic is enough to tempt Mandzukic to trade Champions League football for East London remains to be seen, but he'd certainly fit the bill as the proven goalscorer West Ham are looking for.

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