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Published: 12:00 | 11/2/16

Payet commits to West Ham

Dimitri Payet has signed a new long-term deal with West Ham.

The 28-year-old signed a five-year deal when he joined West Ham from Marseille in the summer, but earlier this week it was claimed that the player had demanded a new and improved contract.

Although the club denied the reports, a statement from the Premier League outfit revealed contract talks were underway amid speculation that a Chinese club was prepaying a £38million bid for the midfielder.

On Thursday the club confirmed he had put pen to paper on a new contract which will see him remain with the London outfit until the summer of 2021.

"West Ham United are delighted to announce that Dimitri Payet has signed a new long-term contract with the club," a statement read.

"The outstanding France playmaker, who has made a huge impact in claret and blue since arriving from Marseille last summer, has penned a deal until the summer of 2021.... and is delighted to have pledged his long-term future to the club."

In an open letter to fans, joint-chairman David Sullivan wrote: "In line with our normal policy, we review the contracts of players who are doing exceptionally well for the club and reward and extend them when the opportunity arises.

"Up to now, Dimitri has been our star player this season and to reward him and to show the supporters our unwavering commitment to building a team we can all be immensely proud of, the board has awarded him an improved and extended contract until 2021.

"His technical ability, his ball skills, his strength, his goals, his assists and his attitude have all combined to give us one of the most exhilarating players I have seen in a West Ham shirt in many, many years.

"I have been watching West Ham since the early 1960s and have seen some fantastic footballers in claret and blue - Trevor Brooking, Alan Devonshire, Paolo Di Canio, Carlos Tevez among them - and Dimi has the talent to be considered among the very best.

"Of course, even more exciting is that Dimi's best in a West Ham shirt is still to come. Just imagine what we can achieve, with him in the team and the club moving into a fantastic new 54,000-capacity stadium in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park this summer.

"Before then, we have 13 Barclays Premier League games to play and are in a good position, sixth in the table and with a chance of qualifying for Europe.

"Today's news means Mark Noble, Winston Reid, Diafra Sakho, Aaron Cresswell, James Tomkins, Adrian, James Collins and now Dimi have all signed new long-term contracts in the past year - all confirmation that we want to keep our best players here for as long as possible."

Earlier, manager Slaven Bilic had underlined the importance of tying Payet down to a new deal.

"If you are playing like he is playing, many clubs will show interest, but we are going to do everything we can to keep him with us," he said.

"Every player has a price, but he is happy at West Ham, we are more than happy with him and I hope and I think he will stay with us for a long, long time."

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