According to latest reports, West Ham United are hot on the heels of Bundesliga forward Anthony Modeste as the manager looks desperately for a proper centre-forward after things went totally opposite to what he had planned this season.
West Ham United sit in the 13th position of the Premier League table at the moment with the club just avoiding the relegation plight. The Hammers had a decent transfer kitty last summer to bring in the necessary reinforcements, but the club got their targets horribly wrong. After being linked with the elite few throughout the transfer season, they had to settle for an on-loan Simone Zaza.
The Italian proved to be a calamitous ship-in for the London side eventually leaving for La Liga side Valencia last January. The pressure intensified when the club’s star player Dimitri Payet decided to leave. West Ham have still managed to score 44 goals this season, which is excellent given that Bilic had to rely hugely on Andy Carroll and Michail Antonio to hold the mast for most of the season.
Though Slaven Bilic managed to bring in Robert Snodgrass in the winter, who brought some added quality to their attacking third, Antonio’s season-ending injury means that the Croat is in severe crisis yet again.
Centre-forward definitely seems the most immediate concern for the squad and if reports are to be believed, Bilic isn’t getting his hands on the player for less than £25m as labelled by his club FC Cologne.
The 29-year-old was one of West Ham’s primary targets last season and it is worth thinking that if they couldn’t convince him to join them with a Europa League participation, it becomes twice more difficult now with no European stature.
Modeste has scored a whopping 23 goals in 29 Bundesliga games attracting traction from a lot of top clubs in Europe that includes Nice and Marseille. A centre-forward by nature, Modeste has had a 64% shot accuracy this season and could be the ideal fit in Bilic’s lone striker setup. At 187cm, he could be lethal from aerial duels and possesses some brilliant finishing attributes.
An academy product of French side OGC Nice, Modeste moved to FC Girondins Bordeaux in 2010, three seasons after breaking into the Nice first team. He spent a number of loan stints with English side Blackburn Rovers, French club SC Bastia before German club TSG 1899 Hoffenheim bought him in 2013. Two impressive seasons there and Cologne picked him up in 2015.
His contract with the club ends in 2021 and Cologne are in no hurry of selling him. However, West Ham willing to pay the lump sum fee is a big question.
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