David Moyes says there has been no contact from West Ham United over Lamine Kone - but admits the Sunderland defender does have a release clause in his contract.
Kone was subject of a bid from Everton for £18million in the summer but Sunderland blocked the move and handed Kone a new, improved contract.
There was fresh reports this week that the Ivory Coast international has a release clause, with Hammers boss Slaven Bilic set to make his move in January.
Moyes has confirmed there is a clause but denied it was the reported £18million figure, with reports suggesting it could be as high as £25million.
When asked about West Ham’s interest, Moyes told the Echo: “I have not been aware of anything through any contact between the clubs.
“I have heard a little bit about the rumours going around but there has been no official contact from West Ham or anything like that between the clubs.”
When pressed on the release clause, he added: “There is a clause in the contract but it doesn’t mean he can go in January.
“Also, I have to say that it is not at the figure that the papers have suggested.”
Kone is one of the club’s most saleable assets and continues to be a transfer target for Everton, while Southampton, Manchester United and Chelsea have all been linked.
He signed for £5million from Lorient in January.