West Ham are one of two teams chasing a deal for Miguel Almiron, but the Hammers would be a lot safer opting for Premier League proven Adam Lallana, who could find himself forced out of Liverpool.
According to Ed Aarons of The Guardian, both Newcastle and West Ham are interest in Atlanta United’s Almiron, who has eight goals and 11 assists this season in the MLS.
The American side value the playmaker at £20m, which is an awful lot of money for a 24 year-old who has never played in a top league.
The Hammers have done some excellent business this summer, and the right player in the number ten role could bring the best out of Marko Arnautovic, Felipe Anderson and Andriy Yarmolenko.
Liverpool have also been very busy, which could be bad news for Lallana. While the England playmaker has struggled with injuries in the last year or so, he still has the industriousness, vision and technical quality to be the missing piece of the puzzle in Pellegrini’s attack.
With two years left on his contract and unlikely to see much playing time at Anfield this season, the Hammers would be much better served testing the Reds’ resolve for the 30 year-old than splashing out big bucks on an MLS player.
Lallana’s injury problems and struggles to nail down a first team place at Anfield have taken the gloss of his Premier League career, but the Englishman still has all the traits to be a success for several more years.
His end product is perhaps his biggest weakness, but it’s far better than he gets credit for. Since earning promotion with Southampton, he averages nearly a goal or assist every 180 minutes. When you consider he’ll be playing alongside Anderson, Yarmolenko and Arnautovic, chipping in once every two games would be more than enough.
His Transfermarkt profile lists a remarkable seven positions that he can play, which shows the sheer freedom of options he would give Pellegrini if he came to East London. His best football has undoubtedly come as a number ten though, where his constant hassling of opposition defenders and quality on the ball makes everyone around him better.
The 5 ft 8 Liverpool ace is creative, hard working, two-footed, and will chip in with the odd goal or two. He also offers far more defensively than Almiron would, which would allow the new attacking signings to shine along with Arnautovic.
The Atlanta forward of course has more pace, but the Hammers have plenty of that on their wings now, and are in desperate need of a player with Lallana’s nous to link it all together.
So, West Ham fans, youth or experience? Which playmaker would you rather sign? Let us know your thoughts by voting in the poll below…