The club’s big spending plans suggest that the Nigerian pair will be on their way
West Ham United co-chairman David Sullivan revealed on Monday that the Hammers have made a big-money transfer bid for an unnamed striker.
Speaking to Sky Sports, the businessman not only confirmed that the Champions League hopefuls had made a move for an attacker, but also that they are planning another high-profile move later this week.
"We've put a bid in today for €30m for a player, and other bids will be going in,” Sullivan began. “We're going to make a £20-25m for a player in England, maybe later this week.
“So, whatever happens, we intend to bring a top striker in."
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Speculation is rife as to the identity of the hitmen referred to by Sullivan, with Liverpool’s Belgian flop Christian Benteke and Olympique de Marseille striker Michy Batshuayi—another Belgian—the two names prominently linked with a switch to East London.
Even if they miss out on Champions League football—a matter which could be settled as soon as Tuesday evening when they host Manchester United in the final match at Upton Park—it’s clear that the Hammers are beginning to operate in a new stratosphere.
While Sullivan sought to play down the revenue boost the club will receive from a switch to the Olympic Stadium, it’s understood that the Irons will be looking to reinvest some of the windfall they receive from over 52,000 confirmed season ticket holders in the squad.
Moves for Benteke and Batshuayi would certainly suggest that the Hammers are willing to put their money where their mouth is and realise their ambitions in the transfer market.
But where does this leave Nigerian pair Victor Moses and Emmanuel Emenike?
The duo moved to the club earlier this season on loan, Moses from Chelsea at the beginning of the campaign, and Emenike from Fenerbahce during the winter window.
Despite impressing sporadically, neither have truly had the impact that could have been expected for Slaven Bilic’s side this term; 29-year-old Emenike has featured 13 times in the EPL, but failed to contribute a goal or an assist—although he did find the net twice during the Hammers’ run to the FA Cup semi-final.
Turkish source Miliyet reported—when the forward moved to the Premier League—that West Ham would be obliged to make a bid for Emenike should he make at least 10 starts during his loan spell.
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Moses has contended with injury and fitness concerns, managing just one goal and two assists in 20 EPL showings.
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Even before Sullivan’s recent revelations about West Ham’s planned spending, it had become increasingly hard to see the Hammers invest in tying Moses down to a permanent deal.
While Moses is a different kind of player to Benteke and Batshuayi, he hasn’t been able to build on his early success in East London—remember that superlative winner against Manchester City?—and the Independent are just one source to have reported that the Hammers are planning to cash in.
The news comes as a sharp reminder to these two peripatetic talents that, as the years tick on, they are still waiting to realise their potential and make their name at one club.
There will be suitors for the duo this summer—Moses more than Emenike—and in the context of their careers, there’s little doubt that the next move will be critical.