Slaven Bilic thinks that West Ham will be genuine contenders for a Champions League spot if they can sign a top-quality striker over the next two months.

The Hammers move into the Olympic Stadium in late July/early August with confidence high after a final campaign at the Boleyn Ground that saw them play some entertaining football on their way to finishing 7th.

Bilic’s side will compete in the Europa League next season but the Croatian feels the goals boost offered by a prolific forward would help them move up to the next level, with joint-chairman David Sullivan confirming to Sky Sports News HQ in May he was confident of landing a “top striker” during the close-season.

“Everyone knows we want a top-class striker. And if we can get a 20-goals-a-season man, there’s no reason why we can’t improve on last season and challenge the Premier League’s top teams,” Bilic told the MailOnline.
Midfield maestro Dimitri Payet was the club’s top scorer with 13 goals last season, with strikers Andy Carroll and Enner Valencia netting just 14 times between them.

Bilic has already added to his squad, with Valencia winger Sofiane Feghouli set to join on a free transfer on July 1, while Norway international Havard Nordtveit will also move to east London from Borussia Monchengladbach when the transfer window opens.

The Hammers boss also revealed they had to ward off interest from a number of clubs who were vying for the duo’s signatures.

“We are proud and glad that Feghouli and Nordtveit have signed for us because other big clubs were trying for them,” added Bilic.