David Gold and David Sullivan’s fraught start to the season could get even worse if the West Ham United ownership were to land David Moyes’ new defensive target, AFC Bournemouth’s Steve Cook.
According to the Daily Star, Moyes sees Cook as a late alternative to Chelsea ace Fikayo Tomori after the England international snubbed a Deadline Day deal to join the Hammers on loan with just ten minutes left of the window.
Tomori backed out of what seemed an agreed-upon season-long deal at 22:50 on Monday night to stay and fight for his place under Frank Lampard, leaving Moyes without a new centre-half having courted one all summer.
West Ham can still shop in the Championship with the domestic window remaining open until October 16, and are understood to be exploring whether or not a deal can be struck for Cook or Watford’s Craig Dawson.
Cook started 28 of his 29 Premier League appearances as Bournemouth were relegated from the top-flight last season, in which he helped Eddie Howe’s side to three clean sheets and with one goal thanks to an average 0.8 tackles, 1.5 interceptions, 5.2 clearances, 4.0 aerial duels won, 34.7 accurate passes and 55.9 touches, per SofaScore.
It is thought the Irons still have a budget of around £30million to work with, and have also been linked with a £10m move for Cherries forward Joshua King following Felipe Anderson’s departure for FC Porto on a temporary deal.
While Moyes is said to favour Cook or Dawson, the Irons ownership of Gold and Sullivan may be wise to favour Dawson and hold talks with Watford in their search of the Scottish coach’s new centre-half.
Gold, Sullivan and Karren Brady have already come under immense backlash from fans this summer with the return of GSB Out protestors at the Newcastle United match, while Trevor Sinclair also laid on more pressure over the lack of signings last month following Grady Diangana’s transfer to West Bromwich Albion.
Key players like Mark Noble likewise hit out at the club’s decision to sell Diangana, with Mr. West Ham tweeting: “As captain of this football club I’m gutted, angry and sad that Grady has left, great kid with a great future!!!!!”
GSB could be in for more of the same somewhere in the future if Cook is signed, as the £45,000-per-week defender is also not one who is afraid to speak their mind.
Cook frustrated former Bournemouth boss Howe earlier in the year when he told BBC Radio Solent, via the Bournemouth Echo, that the Cherries’ performance in defeat to Newcastle was “embarrassing” and that “we are men in the dressing room but played like kids.”
While Cook’s comments were not on the Cherries’ ownership, GSB may fear the 29-year-old turning his anger towards them if he joins and at some point feels similar dismay to Noble in the direction Gold, Sullivan and Brady are taking the Hammers.