West Brom are one of several Premier League clubs to have expressed an interest in Southend’s highly-rated goalkeeper David Bentley.
The 22-year-old joined the Shrimpers as a youth player and has gradually worked his way into the first team at Roots Hall after making his debut in 2011.
Since Bentley replaced former number one Paul Smith he kept 19 clean sheets in the 2013-14 season and broke Mervyn Cawston’s club record of 10 consecutive home clean sheets with 12 in a row between October and April last term.
He ended the season as the hero in Southend’s penalty shoot-out win against Wycombe in the League Two play-off final to secure promotion to League One, while he also sealed a place in the PFA’s League Two team of the year.
Bentley has continued to impress for Phil Brown’s side this season after QPR failed with three bids to try and sign him last summer.
However, a number of Premier League clubs are now expressing an interest with the Baggies thought to be in the running, along with Everton, Norwich, Watford and Bournemouth.
Bentley will be out of contract at the end of this season but any club who wants to sign him will have to pay compensation to Southend due to his age and because he is an academy product at the Essex outfit.