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The Carling Cup fourth round continues this midweek with Chelsea v Villa & Everton v Arsenal the big ties. Click here for outright odds.

The takeover bid of West Ham by Icelandic businessman Eggert Magnusson has moved a step closer as his financial advisors begin inspecting the club’s accounts.

Magnusson has been given permission to conduct the process of due diligence as he looks to make a formal offer sometime next week.

It is understood Magnusson is unconcerned by reports that an unnamed American businessman is also interested in the club and believes his offer will prove attractive to West Ham shareholders.

A spokesman for the Icelandic businessman said: “We are moving forward.”

Magnusson met West Ham chairman Terry Brown on Monday and indicated he would be prepared to offer £75million, and would also be prepared to take on the £22.5million debt.

The latest development means the prospect of a rival bid fronted by Iranian-born Kia Joorabchian looks less increasingly unlikely.

The Carling Cup fourth round continues this midweek with Chelsea v Villa & Everton v Arsenal the big ties. Click here for outright odds.

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