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Albian Ajeti: West Ham hit gold selling striker to Celtic in 2020 despite 44% loss

David Moyes played a blinder urging West Ham United to part with Albian Ajeti last summer, despite having to accept a 44% loss to sell him to Celtic.

Ajeti had joined the Hammers for £8m from Swiss outfit FC Basel in August 2019 to provide competition for Michail Antonio and Sebastien Haller under Manuel Pellegrini.

But the 24-year-old would fail to score in any of his nine appearances before the Chilean was fired, and continued to miss the mark upon Moyes’ arrival.

Was Moyes right to sell Ajeti last summer?

Yes, he wasn't good enough

Yes, he wasn't good enough

No, he deserved more time

No, he deserved more time

Ajeti would ultimately last just a year at the London Stadium before he followed Pellegrini out of the exit door, when Moyes marked him as one option to sell to raise funds for Said Benrahma’s arrival.

Celtic came to Ajeti’s rescue and offered the striker a move away from east London to Glasgow and paid West Ham £4.5m to take him, but have only lived to rue the decision.

The 11-cap attacker burst out of the blocks to score five goals in his first six Premiership appearances and show West Ham the sort of player they had said goodbye to, but the strikes have dried up since.

Ajeti has only scored once in his last 13 Scottish top-flight outings and has even been left to watch the Hoops’ past four games from the sidelines.

Questions are already being asked over how much longer Ajeti will remain at Parkhead, too, given his position under interim boss John Kennedy and his displays when on the pitch.

Former Hoops and Irons star Franck McAvennie was highly critical of Ajeti for his performance against Livingston in the Scottish Cup on Saturday, telling Football Insider:

“I’m a striker and I look at strikers, I look at Ajeti and for me, no. He’s just not good enough. He’s had enough time and I’m looking at Ajeti and thinking: ‘you’re on big money, at least sprint, at least do something’.

“He doesn’t even get involved in the build-up. Jonjoe Kenny is firing balls across and he must be furious because it’s terrible for him that people aren’t there for him, he’s a striker’s dream.

“He [Ajeti] needs to go, and Celtic should accept even half of what they paid for him.”

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Ajeti failed to register a single shot or attempt a dribble during his 22 minutes on the field against Livingston, while only recording a mere six touches of the ball, per SofaScore.

It further meant he ended the game, which Celtic won 6-0, with a match rating of 6.5 out of 10 – just below his average 6.85 for the Premiership season yet above his 6.46 achieved in the Premier League last term.

His performance was not out of sorts, either, having only averaged 15 touches a game in the Premiership this season, where he has offered Celtic just 0.6 shots and 0.5 successful dribbles per outing as well.

Clearly, West Ham are not being made to pay for Moyes forcing Ajeti out of the door. And while Celtic may soon have to accept a similar loss, the Hammers were at least about to limit the hit by selling when they did.

AND in other news, West Ham eye 23-year-old talent once backed to become “world-class”

Article title: Albian Ajeti: West Ham hit gold selling striker to Celtic in 2020 despite 44% loss

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