David Sullivan potentially wasted a whopping £31m by signing Sebastien Haller from Eintracht Frankfurt amid reports West Ham United could look to sell the striker next summer.
According to Claret and Hugh, Haller is playing on borrowed time at the London Stadium after it was decided that the Ivory Coast international will be placed on the Irons’ transfer list at the end of the season.
Neither the forward nor the club are presently interested in a potential mid-season loan exit for the 26-year-old, who continues to have his admirers in Germany despite failing to make any real impact in England following his £45m capture in 2019.
At least three Bundesliga outfits are believed to have approached West Ham looking to discuss a temporary deal for Haller, only to be informed he is not available until the summer when he will cost any interested side at least £25m.
Further conversations between Hammers chiefs and the unnamed interested clubs have only increased the likelihood of a permanent transfer in the next off-season, when Haller will have earned close to £11m through his £115,000-per-week West Ham contract.
Haller has featured in 13 of David Moyes’ 14 Premier League squads thus far this season but only started seven of his appearances after the Irons lost leading striker Michail Antonio in October through the first of two hamstring injuries.
While the claims of interest in Germany suggest Bundesliga clubs forgive Haller for struggling in the Premier League due to Moyes’ tactics, his spell in east London would forever be regarded as a major disaster should he leave the Irons next summer.
Former Director of Football Mario Husillos and manager Manuel Pellegrini spent big on making Haller the Irons’ record signing and awarding him the most-lucrative contract among current West Ham players.
For that, the Hammers have only been rewarded with 14 goals in 50 games across all competitions, including a hit-rate of one every 297 minutes in the Premier League.
Moyes continually asks Haller for more, with the former Manchester United coach urging the France-born forward to show in his performances why he developed a big reputation in Germany, where he netted 24 times in 60 Bundesliga appearances.
“I’ve got to say, he’s got a great reputation throughout Europe. His goals in Germany were excellent at Frankfurt, so let’s hope he can bring them to West Ham,” Moyes said.
“I would hope that I don’t need to categorise him that he can only play in a certain type of game. I want to see a big whole-hearted, committed centre-forward who we know can contribute to the team. We’ve got the makings of a good team and I want Seb to be part of it.”
It remains to be seen, however, for how much longer Haller is a part of Moyes’ team.