WEST HAM paid thousands of pounds for Jesse Lingard's unsuccessful trial, according to reports.
Lingard, 30, had been working out with the Hammers but did not earn a deal before jetting to Saudi Arabia to join Steven Gerrard's Al-Ettifaq instead.
But the arrangement still hit West Ham in the pocket, with the club putting the former Manchester United star up in a hotel for six weeks as he trained with the first team.
According to the Daily Mail, they Hammers also arranged all of Lingard's transport due to his six-month driving ban.
In July, the 32-cap England star pleaded guilty to failing to give police the name of the driver of his car after it was caught speeding last year.
The midfielder's Range Rover was flashed by a speed camera on the A56 in Trafford.
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He was fined £900 plus a further £560 in costs, and received his half-a-year road ban following a "totting up" process from points already on his licence from two previous speeding offences.
Lingard's lawyer claimed he was not the driver but missed the letter telling him to provide the drivers' details as it went to his old address in Manchester while he was then living in Nottingham.
Reports suggested West Ham were considering a contract offer for Lingard.
However, they pulled their interest when he flew to Saudi Arabia to train with Al-Ettifaq.
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Lingard has been without a club since his one-year deal with Nottingham Forest expired last season.
The England international – who has not played for the Three Lions since 2021 – failed to score a single league goal for Steve Cooper's side.
The free agent spent 20 years at boyhood Man Utd before leaving in 2022.
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