West Ham United spent an awful lot of money in the summer but was any of it actually spent remotely well?
Six players came into the club, ranging from the likes of £45m buy Sebastien Haller to free transfer Roberto, but one has to say that not a single one of them has performed as they would have been expected to.
Here Football FanCast ranks their contributions to the Hammers cause. All transfer figures, unless otherwise stated, have been sourced from Soccerbase.
This is a tricky one.
Signed for £45m, a club-record, one has to say that, as a striker, he hasn’t really delivered. Seven Premier League goals is a remarkably poor return.
But at the same time, he hasn’t been placed in the correct system; at Eintracht Frankfurt, he impressed because he was paired with Luka Jovic, who is now at Real Madrid.
At West Ham, he has been on his own up front and it should be little surprise that it hasn’t worked.
Hopes will be high that he can deliver next season but, for this season, he has to be labelled a flop, particularly given the outlay to bring him in.
A diminutive playmaker, perhaps the Hammers hoped Fornals would fill a Dimitri Payet-sized hole, especially for such a fee.
A return of two goals and five assists in 27 Premier League appearances is pitiful and Fornals has never really got up to speed with the physicality of the division.
It hasn’t worked out for him at all but, much like Haller, perhaps it is teething problems.
Even so, he must go down as a flop.
What was the point?
Ajeti came in for £8m and has played eight times in the Premier League, never once starting a game.
He hasn’t scored. That’s £1m-per-game without a single positive contribution.
We have to be a little kinder here.
Cardoso was certainly brought in as an investment, a player who can grow, improve, and eventually be a member of the first-team squad.
He hasn’t even played a senior game of football for the club yet.
Let’s say the jury is out.
An unmitigated disaster.
Roberto might well be the worst ever West Ham signing.
Brought in as back-up to Lukasz Fabianski, he was thrust into the team when the Poland international picked up an injury and played eight Premier League games.
He conceded 17 goals, never kept a clean sheet and was dropped as soon as Fabianski came back to fitness.
Ultimately, to watch Roberto try to catch a football is like watching a fish trying to solve long-form equations.
Signed to be third-choice, Martin was given something of a chance after Roberto’s disastrous first few appearances.
While he did keep two clean sheets – including one against Chelsea on his debut – he still shipped six goals in his five outings.
Still, it is hard to be too harsh on a player who never expected to actually play.
And to keep Chelsea out provided one of the images of the season, as he was left in tears while hugging his father, West Ham legend Alvin Martin.
What a terrible summer.
Cardoso can be seen as an investment and one has to say that Martin did well when called upon.
But the rest have ranged from shambolic to disappointing.
Haller and Fornals could still deliver but, right now, it seems like £69m was spent on little return, while Roberto…
The less said about the goalkeeper the better.
Indeed, it is very easy to blame David Moyes, the current manager, for the club’s malaise as they continue to fight against relegation.
But ultimately, he can only make do with the squad he has been given; the Irons, particularly co-owners David Gold and David Sullivan, let the club down in the transfer window last year.
That is coming back to bite West Ham severely.