The Sun reporter claims on his personal Twitter account that the 21-year-old centre forward is wanted by the League Two side to bolster their attacking options this season, having seen him spend time on loan at Oldham Athletic last season.
Mansfield. Looking to do a deal for Afolayan at West Ham. Young forward. Loan. Was at Oldham last season.
— Alan Nixon (@reluctantnicko) August 29, 2019
Afolayan has never appeared for the first-team at the London Stadium but has been a regular for the Irons’ under-23 side, while his loan spell at Oldham saw him fail to score in 10 appearances.
He joined West Ham from Solihull Moors back in January 2018.
Game time can be vital for the development of a young talent and in the year-and-a-half that Afolayan has spent at the London Stadium, he has not been given much of a chance to play. He has got to earn that right and a loan spell should give him the necessary experience to learn what the demands are of a professional footballer. He is obviously nowhere near making the breakthrough in east London right now and so it would make a lot of sense to get him playing regular first-team football somewhere else. Mansfield are hovering around in mid-table right now but will have aspirations of pushing for promotion and that is the sort of side the Hammers should be happy letting their youngsters move to. There will be a certain amount of pressure and expectation to perform and that will only help the striker’s development if a move does come off.