Reports by Fichajes earlier this week claimed that David Moyes is weighing up a move for Valencia forward Goncalo Guedes, who could prove to be West Ham United’s next megastar.
Guedes is seen to have one foot out of the door at the Mestalla after an injury-ravished few seasons have held the Portuguese maestro back from reaching his full potential.
It is not expected that the 24-year-old will be able to leave the shadows of his La Liga outfit before the summer market opens, with los murcielagos far from seeing the same player who fascinated fans with his goals, assists and dazzling dribbles in seasons past.
Valencia have already placed an asking price on the head of the 23-cap international under the £36m paid to Paris Saint-Germain in 2018, and far below the €300m (£258m) release clause included in his contract.
Javi Gracia’s side are said to value Guedes at just €15m (£13m), which has sparked West Ham, SSC Napoli and AS Monaco to begin showing an interest in the £101,000-per-week maestro.
Guedes played no role in his side’s 2-0 win over Celta de Vigo on Saturday after being sent to the bench after one of his worst performances of the season the week prior, as Valencia lost 2-0 at Real Madrid and the winger was hauled off at the break.
The Santiago Bernabeu affair marked Guedes’ 15th start in 18 La Liga appearances this term, with him previously scoring and assisting just one goal. An ankle injury kept the winger on the sidelines for 14 matches last season, after which he was involved in four goals (2 scored, 2 assisted).
Guedes clearly needs a fresh start to rediscover the player who lit up the Mestalla during his year on loan from PSG in 2017/18, when he offered five goals and 11 assists, and Moyes sealing a deal can see the West Ham chief bring the next megastar to the London Stadium.
West Ham have been without a true game-changing forward of high-calibre quality since Dimitri Payet returned to Olympique de Marseille for £25m in 2017, after lighting up east London with the Irons on his back.
“I think all the players, they go out on the pitch and go: ‘Go on then, Payet, do something, and then when you’ve done something, we’ll start getting involved. You get it going first.’” Paul Merson once told Sky Sports Soccer Saturday, via quotes by HITC.
“None of them step up to the plate. I just think they rely on him so much to make things happen and if he doesn’t make anything happen, the other lads just won’t step up to the plate and that’s worrying for West Ham.”
The Irons have more players capable of sharing the burden now in Said Benrahma, Pablo Fornals, Jarrod Bowen and January loan signing Jesse Lingard, but neither of those players can pick up a side and carry them to glory in the way Payet did.
Benrahma may have four assists in the Premier League this season but is still yet to score in claret and blue, while Fornals has contributed five goals (2 assisted, 3 scored). Bowen, meanwhile, has had a hand in eight goals (five scored, three assisted) but is in the midst of his third lengthy drought of the campaign with no frequency to his output.
Guedes would be expected to help take the whole Irons unit to another level if signed for what could prove a bargain £13m this summer, with the forward considered by Garcia to be a “very offensive player”.
West Ham just have to trust in what Guedes achieved before his injuries and the dark days that have since consumed the forward’s time at the Mestalla.
AND in other news, West Ham express interest in £40m star ‘frustrated’ at his current club…