Written by Steven McCarthy @StevenMcCarthy9
Transfers are a funny game, as I have seen over and over again the past year or two Ex seems to get no end of crap for simply keeping us informed and up to date!
Now with this I am going to take my chance for complete hyperbole and outline what I think we should do in the summer.
First off is one that saddens me to say but, I would look to sell Carroll for as much as possible.
With the caveat that it is only to an overseas team (and pray it is one with deep pockets at that) because knowing the West Ham way if we didn’t, he would score against us every single time we play him.
I appreciate that Carroll is a real handful on his day and the athleticism he shows at times is simply awesome, however I feel that on the big wages he is and with such an awful injury record, he simply does not produce and appear enough to warrant a place next season for me.
I also have a problem with the argument that there are no other players out there like him, because a prime example of this would be Llorente at Swansea. He has taken time to find his feet but he has scored goals this season with the exact same attributes to his game. Should Swansea go down, I think it would be great business for the club and hopefully turn out a bit better than the current World Cup winner in the squad!
If we got a decent sum for Carroll I would say go for Bas Dost from Wolfsburg, another great physical player in a Wolfsburg side .
This would take care of having a big physical presence up top, but why just settle for the one. If ex is correct that Batshuayi is our top target then I think we should go all out to sign him, although I think he would certainly require a 25 million + bid, I think with a player of his age and promise, you only have to look at the figures for a player like Lukaku being bandied about to say that it would be worth a punt!
Would I take Defoe on a free?
On a free, yes. But I have reservations, I still remember crying when we got relegated and then throwing a strop when he left (I was 11). Despite his lack of goals recently, I think he has the technique and athleticism to be a handful for at least a season or two and would get 10 goals a season easily.
With regards to a last striker, if we are looking for a loan as the owners love! I would go for Iheanacho from City, I have heard that Guardiola rates him highly however with Aguero and Jesus I see it being a struggle for him to getin the side and a loan would suit both parties.
Forwards: Llorente, Batshuayi, Defoe, Bas Dost and Iheanacho
Midfield wise, I would sell Noble and bring in some of the youngsters with a point to prove.
I love Noble as he has been a great ambassador for the club and presence in the side, however I am somewhat sure that he is simply not good enough for a top half team.
And although only showing recent glimpses, I think Nordtveit has shown that he is worth giving another season. Against Everton and Stoke, he was good in the air, physically strong, showed a good range of passing and read the game particularly well!
I like Ruben Loftus Cheek and Chalobah of Chelsea as the players we could bring in somewhat cheaply for that Central midfield position (and cover in defence if needed) I think limited playing time this season is a worry for both these players this season and if we think that Obiang and Kouyate are going to be the central partnership next season, then having youngsters of pace, presence and quality would be a real string to our bow.
This is a big one for us, as having that player who can just instantly turn a game and create something from nothing is pretty much all at the feet of Lanzini currently.
I won’t waste any more time talking about the snake, so let’s move onto who we could replace him with, and I think the main player West Ham fans would like to see is probably Sigurdsson of Swansea.
He is a proven premier league player who regularly delivers on set pieces and creates a chance with an inch perfect pass. Is he as explosive or dynamic as Payet, I would say no, but would he work his socks off for the team and consistently perform, for me it is a yes!
I think I am in the minority with my next point, but unless a good offer came in, I would keep a hold of Snodgrass. If ever we were looking for a player to show off a bit of strength in depth then I think having Snodgrass in rotation would display exactly that.
He was on fire at Hull and I think that he deserves a bit more time, you don’t suddenly lose the ability to score goals in this league, particularly when you were playing in that injury riddled Hull side and I think a performing Snodgrass would be an asset to any side outside the top 5 or 6.
Tore is off at the end of the season – thank god!
Feghouli is an interesting one, he works hard, but would I keep him? I think that he works hard, but if we got a decent offer, then I would happily let him go.
If it were my choice, Sigurdsson would be top due to the Premier League experience, however I think there is another French League player available with Lyons, Rachid Ghezzal being available at the end of the season on a free transfer. He is a left footed right winger who loves to cut inside, quick and surprisingly physical player with an eye for goal, I think although he could take time to settle, he could potentially be the player closest in quality to Payet available and realistically available to us. His set pieces are strong, he delivers good balls and I think that he would be a really great buy for us.
Midfielders: Loftus-Cheek, Chalobah, Sigurdsson, Ghezzal
Where do I start on this one, we have been abysmal this year at the back and I think that although Arthur Masouaku has shown real quality in the last few games there are very few who can hold there heads high this year.
People are forgetting that we have Ogbonna to return, and although he and Reid would be our ideal centre partnership I would say that our strength in depth is still up for question. I love Ginge as much as any Hammers fan, however is he really a player I see challenging for a starting position or being a quality cover should anybody pick up a knock.
No, to be brutally honest he is lacking in too many departments like pace, passing and touch to be solid in this league if we want to progress.
Fonte….let’s just hope he improves, because having only just signed I cannot see anything realistically happening this window!
I think the glaring position for every fan is Right Back, as an out and out right back I like Byram and see him as a solid option, so why not buy in somebody like Mensah to be young competition.
He is an absolute beast – and has the potential to be everything Billic had hoped Antonio would be. 6ft 4, quick, good in the air and built like a brick outhouse, I think he could be a fan favourite anywhere!
I am a fan, he is a tough tackling and often no nonsense player, going forward, I am not too sure about him as he hasn’t got the game time with the excellent Valencia infront of him.
However the pace, leap and height he possesses will always always make him a threat going forward from set pieces at the bare minimum.
Mourinho seem’s to love berating the defenders in his squad and I think that barring wage demands, a move for any of the once ‘Great Hopes’ of Smalling and Jones (dreading that after his awful acting against us!) would be a smart move in my eyes, given the versatility they possess across the back line!
Kevin Malcuit is the player I see us linked with frequently at the moment, and whilst I really like his pace and attacking attributes, I feel that he could be a player who really struggles to find his feet in this league.
Although he is pretty much 6ft tall, he is slight of frame and often wanders too far forward from defensive positions, which at 25 could be something that is too etched into his game to change.
That being said, I would take him if we were playing our 5 at the back system with him as a wingback if it were for a sensible price.
Defenders: Fosu-Mensah, Smalling or Jones and Malcuit for a potential attacking wing back.
As for Goalkeeper, I was really gutted to hear that it seems Pickford looks to be on his way to Everton!
A young English goalie with great promise is something I think all Hammers fans would love to see and if possible, I would do all I could to hijack the deal (as we so often seem to be the victim of!).
However if we want an English keeper the only realistic option I see is Tom Heaton from Burnley, and he is 31.
The other name I see us linked with, Joe Hart is 30. Both are great keepers, but I think Heaton would demand a large fee and Hart would require huge wages so I would look elsewhere.
Personally, I would go for Begovic at Stoke, who would only just turn 30 this year. I think that with Stoke looking to make Butland no.1 a player of his quality would not be happy playing second fiddle yet again.
As for the current keepers we have, I would keep Adrian and let Randolph leave if he was unhappy being second choice.
I love Adrian and although he has a mistake in him every so often, I feel his love of the club, fan interaction and shot stopping ability on the pitch more than make up for that!
And who can forget that penalty….
Goalkeeper: Begovic and Adrian to be given an extended contract
However, I will end the column with my main goal for the summer:
Keeping a hold of Lanzini and Antonio – we all know the quality that Lanzini possesses, but Antonio is one who I feel we simply must keep at the club.
He gives everything out on the pitch every time he plays, he is a threat from set pieces, strong, great leap and always finding a bit of space in the area. I think he is a great player and looks like he improves in his weakest area – his touch, every game I see him in!
At the moment I am hoping we finish as high as possible and look to take the steps as fans to make the London Stadium our home! COYI’s!!!!