West Ham United are enjoying another successful campaign, with David Moyes’ side hoping to go one better than last season’s sixth-place finish by qualifying for the Champions League.
The Hammers are currently fifth and are still in the conversation of the top-four, however, the situation is currently out of their control with both Manchester United and Arsenal having games in hand.
Moyes boasts an impressive roster of players, although there is one key area that is significantly light in quality and personnel which may cost the Irons significantly: striker.
After Michail Antonio, the east London club don’t have a senior centre forward which has already caused complications this campaign when the Jamaica international has been absent through suspension or injury.
The striker has scored nine goals in 29 appearances across all competitions this season but, at 31 can’t be relied upon for much longer.
Moyes did reveal to the media that the Hammers had attempted to spend money during the January transfer window, stating:
“We probably made three record transfer bids from the club in this January window and let’s be fair, January is never really a great time.
“I also believe it’s probably been tougher because we’re looking at a much different level of player now and trying to attract some of the top players throughout Europe.”
With plenty of centre-forwards linked with a move to the London Stadium, there’s one in particular who will still be on the mind of Moyes, and that’s Bayer Leverkusen’s Patrick Schick.
The Czech Republic international has become a relatively well-known name in Europe over recent years, particularly in the Bundesliga with the 26-year-old playing for RB Leipzig before his current employers Leverkusen.
Prior to moving to Germany, the Czech played in Serie A, first with Sampdoria before joining Roma in 2018 which didn’t particularly work out with the striker being sent on loan to RB Leipzig a year later having scored three goals in 24 league matches.
After scoring ten goals in 22 Bundesliga appearances for Leipzig, Schick opted to remain in Germany but instead signed permanently for Bayer Leverkusen, where he scored 13 goals in 36 appearances across all competitions last season.
However, it’s this campaign where the attacker has really hit his peak, scoring 20 times in 20 appearances in the German top-flight already.
The man, who was labelled as a “genius” by his national team manager Jaroslav Silhavy during last summers European Championships, was linked with a move to the London Stadium last month, but the move never materialised.
Not signing a striker last month could end up proving seriously costly for Moyes’ side with fine margins separating the east London club from Champions League, Europa League or Conference League qualification, or missing out on Europe entirely.