West Ham United have seen an official bid rejected for the potential missing spark in David Moyes’ midfield in Club Brugge captain Hans Vanaken.
According to Sky Sports, West Ham have seen an offer worth in the region of £13million rejected for Club Brugge’s star midfielder and skipper Vanaken.
The Belgian champions are thought to be holding out for a larger sum approaching the end of the summer transfer window, whilst knowing their key playmaker is secured under a £35,000-per-week contract until 2024 having penned new terms only last season.
Sky Sports were not the first outlet to cite the Irons’ interest in Vanaken, as reports in Belgian outlet Het Laatste Nieuws claimed a bid worth in excess of €15m (£13.5m) had been rejected as Club Brugge believe his goals and assists are too important.
West Ham have stepped up their pursuit of Vanaken under the instructions of Moyes, as the Irons boss is said to be keen on continuing his love of working with Belgian players and considers the Brugge sensation to be a ‘dream reinforcement’.
Vanaken struck 17 goals and penned three assists across all competitions last season to continue a trend of firing home 10 or more times in a campaign dating back to the 2012/13 term, and has begun the new season with four goals and two assists in seven league outings.
Brugge will likely demand vastly more for the 28-year-old than the Hammers have so far offered given his creative output and a belief that the Premier League side’s bid was ‘inconsistent with Vanaken’s value’, while HLN further suggest the Jupiler Pro League outfit will look toward the €32m (£29m) rivals AA Gent received for Jonathan David.
All things considered, a deal for Vanaken would appear extremely unlikely without West Ham parting with a high-ticket player before Monday’s Deadline Day passes. Moyes would also need to convince the midfielder of a move to England, as HLN understand he is enjoying his time in Knokke and may not wish to seek a new adventure at this stage.
But if David Gold and David Sullivan are able to make Moyes’ ‘dream’ a reality, the Irons ownership would be acquiring the missing spark of the Scottish tactician’s team and adding a player of sheer quality to a unit desperate for help.
Jarrod Bowen is the only current Hammers ace to have found the back of the net from midfield in the Premier League this season, while Pablo Fornals accounts for the sole assist. Similarly, Robert Snodgrass (10), Mark Noble (7) and Andriy Yarmolenko (6) accounted for their highest goal involvement last term.
Vanaken would take a great deal of the pressure of those players to thrive this season and carry a large amount of the creative burden, but it would not be expected to effect the five-cap Belgian international’s performances.
A two-time Belgian Footballer of the Year, Vanaken is at the peak of his powers as the creative hub in Brugge’s plans with a passing range Moyes is right to admire thanks to an average 6.4 accurate long balls from 55.1 passes a league game, per WhoScored.
He also excels in the air with 2.3 duels won a game and boasts a fierce eye for goal – as seen in his immense record but also from only needing 1.7 shots per match. Give him a free role in the midfield at the London Stadium and Moyes will be in heaven let alone dreaming.
AND in other news, West Ham have submitted an offer to sign David Moyes’ top striker target.