Faubert in Real Madrid talks

West Ham United can confirm the club have given Julien Faubert permission to talk to Real Madrid about a loan move with a view to a permanent switch in the summer.

The 25-year-old has made a total of 32 Barclays Premier League and cup appearances for the Hammers following his arrival from FC Girondins de Bordeaux in July 2007. Faubert's West Ham United career was initially interrupted by a ruptured achilles tendon suffered in a friendly against Czech side Sigma Olomouc during the club's pre-season tour to Austria just a few weeks after signing.

The right-sided player battled back to fitness and made his debut as a substitute in the 2-1 Premier League victory over Fulham at the Boleyn Ground on 12 January 2008. However, the Le Havre-born player has been unable to force his way into Gianfranco Zola's starting eleven in recent weeks and had previously spoken to the manager about a move away from the Boleyn Ground.

West Ham United CEO Scott Duxbury said: "Julien has struggled to get into Gianfranco Zola's team this season and, despite the high hopes we had for him when he joined us 18 months ago, he has not had the best of times. He had asked the manager about a possible move and we felt it right to let him talk to Real Madrid. If it does not happen, then we will of course welcome Julien back into the squad.

"I was first contacted by Madrid on Friday morning and after extensive negotiations we have agreed in principle a deal that would see them paying us a £1.5m fee to take Julien until the end of the season. His long-term future would then be reviewed in the summer with a significant transfer fee payable should Madrid want to take up their option. If Julien does go on loan, then we will look quickly to bring in a replacement."