As a 16 year old football fan, seeing my team go from one of the worst in the Premier League under Avram Grant, and then only going on to get promoted back to the top tier via the play-offs (an amazing day at Wembley) to be challenging for European football has been an amazing journey.
After seeing a post on Twitter today saying that a Chinese club is willing to pay up to £13.5 million for Enner Valencia, all I could think of is how we would potentially only be paying £10m-£20m for a high quality striker like Michy Batshuayi or Alexandre Lacazette. This season Lacazette has scored 21 goals in 33 league appearances for Lyon, whereas Batshuayi has scored 17 goals in 32 appearances. Both are very good goalscoring records, also, Batshuayi is two year younger than Lacazette, which could command a higher transfer fee.
From what I’ve seen of Batshuayi, he seems to be a similar style of attacker to Diafra Sakho, so surely we want someone who offers something different, and Lacazette is that man. His raw pace and lethal finishing would make him an amazing signing for West Ham and a completely different striker to anyone with have. As a partner for Andy Carroll or coming off of the bench to frighten defenders with his pace and dribbling, he could offer so much to West Ham.
Lacazette is also likely to be a much cheaper signing than Batshuayi, this is because of the upcoming European Championships in Lacazette’s native France. Batshuayi has been selected for the Belgium squad, but Lacazette has only made the reserves for the France squad. This means that he is unlikely to go to the tournament and therefore his transfer value will be lower. According to TransferMarkt Lacazette is worth £22.5 million, which is reasonable figure for a proven goalscorer – albeit Lyon are understood to have rejected an offer worth around £31m – however we don’t know the finer details of this proposal.
Lacazette is a much more versatile forward than Batshuayi, he can change a game for West Ham as he can play on the left, right, or through the middle. West Ham need that kind of attacking versatility as we have two strikers in Carroll and Sakho who can only play through the middle. And then there’s Valencia, who struggles to play anywhere. He has only performed well in two games since he signed after the 2014 World Cup. He played well against Hull in 2014, and Bournemouth earlier in the year. Other than that he has been on par with Modibo Maiga as the worst striker to put on a West Ham shirt in the last three years.
Lacazette is an international team-mate of Dimitri Payet, so he could be tempted to the Olympic Stadium. It’s no secret that the West Ham fans love an exciting player, and Lacazette certainly excites the fans of Lyon, so hopefully, in a few months he will be wowing supporters in Stratford instead.
A prolific goalscorer is what we need, and, in my opinion, he is the man to take us forward and take us into the second season in the Olympic Stadium with Champions League football.
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