Cardiff manager Dave Jones is West Ham's top target to replace sacked Avram Grant.
Hammers co-owners David Sullivan and David Gold intend to find a new boss by the end of the month, while Jones's future in Wales is uncertainafter he again failed to lead the Bluebirds to top-flight promotion this season.
The 54-year-old was due to hold talks with chief executive Gethin Jenkins and Cardiff's Malaysian ownerson Monday to discuss his future. West Ham would give him an immediate route back into management should he leave.
Sullivan and Gold were monitoring Alex McLeish, but after relegated Birmingham decided to stick with the Scot, they decided Jones was the man to lead them back to the top flight next season.
The club will have to sell several stars this summer to stay afloat after dropping into the Championship.
But midfielder Thomas Hitzlsperger will be allowed to leave the Hammers for nothing thanks to a relegation release clause.
Demba Ba reportedly had a similar clause put in his contract when he joined from Hoffenheim in January. Sunderland are keen on the Senegal striker.
West Ham 0 Sunderland 3: Hammers fans vent fury after gutless farewellYou can't cage a lion! Paolo Di Canio swaggers his way into SwindonAll the latest West Ham United news, features and opinion
Explore more:People: David Gold, Thomas Hitzlsperger, Alex McLeish, Gethin Jenkins, David Sullivan Places: Cardiff, Birmingham, Wales