Jose Fonte has hit back at claims from West Ham United chairman David Sullivan that his children ‘begged’ him not to buy the defender from Southampton in January.

In an interview with The Guardian last week, the 68-year-old said that he did not choose which players to sign and hinted that the Portugal international would not have been bought in had he had the final say, instead of former manager Slaven Bilic.

Sullivan also highlighted Robert Snodgrass, now out on loan at Aston Villa, as another player that his children advised him not to bring to the club.

Fonte has now had his say on the comments, blasting the former Birmingham City owner’s ‘ignorance’ but stating that it would have ‘no effect’ on him personally.

“It’s ignorance. I’m not going to say anything,” the Euro 2016 winner is quoted as saying by Sky Sports.

“It’s not going to change who I am. It’s not going to change what I do.

“I’m going to keep being the good professional that I am. I am going to keep working hard to try and help my team-mates and the manager.

“What has been said has no effect on me or who I am.”

An injury picked up in the 2-2 draw with Crystal Palace last month is expected to keep Fonte sidelined until the new year.

The centre-back has struggled for form since joining the Hammers despite garnering a reputation as one of the Premier League’s most reliable defenders during his time with the Saints.

David Moyes has taken over as manager since Fonte’s last appearance and on Saturday picked up his first victory in charge, a surprise 1-0 triumph over local rivals Chelsea.

That result, coupled with a battling performance in the 2-1 loss against Manchester City the week before, has given fans hope that the Scot can guide the team out of its current predicament.

The Irons host Arsenal on Wednesday night knowing that another win could lift them out of the relegation zone.