A surprise name has emerged in West Ham’s hunt for a new forward this summer…
According to Turkish journalist Ekrem Konur, the Irons are keeping tabs on Aleksandar Mitrovic’s situation at Fulham, who were relegated back to the Championship earlier this week.
It’s claimed that David Moyes is a big fan of the Serbian powerhouse and believes he “can succeed” at the London Stadium under his stewardship.
Konur also suggests that “formal contacts” are expected to be made between the two clubs at the end of the season.
It remains to be seen how much the 26-year-old would cost the Hammers, though CIES Football Observatory currently value him at €20m (£18m), whilst he’s also earning reported wages of £60k-per-week at Craven Cottage.
David Gold, David Sullivan and Karen Brady must reject Moyes’ desire to land Mitrovic at all costs as they will be making their worst mistake since splashing the cash on Sebastian Haller.
The Ivory Coast striker cost the East London outfit a club-record £45m but was sold after 18 months, having only found the net 14 times, and they made a net loss of around £20m on him – a disastrous turn of events.
It’s no secret that Moyes desperately needs an alternative option to the injury-prone Michail Antonio, if not a perfect foil to partner him but he’s barking up the wrong tree by targeting the Fulham flop.
Mitrovic has never delivered in the Premier League consistently and that has to be a major cause of concern.
In 104 top-flight appearances across spells with the Cottagers and Newcastle United, the 6 foot 2 attacker has only scored 24 goals, which is actually a far worse games-per-goal ratio (4.3) than Haller (3.7).
Whilst Mitrovic has also always carried an element of controversy wherever he’s been.
During a win over Huddersfield Town in the Championship in August 2019, fans lambasted him as “embarrassing” and “shameless” for feigning an injury whilst more recently, Sky Sports pundit Andy Hinchcliffe slammed him for an elbow on Ben White, calling it “really naughty.”
His former boss at the Magpies, Steve McClaren, added his thoughts soon after, and claimed (via Leeds Live): “That’s how he is, that’s what he was like as a kid when we signed him for Newcastle. He’s so aggressive, he bullies you. That’s what he did. The first five games he played, I think he got sent off twice for us. He has to calm down, he has to control his emotions and play the game.”
That should be enough to put any manager off, let alone his three league goals this campaign.
GSB must absolutely steer clear of Mitrovic this summer, no matter how badly Moyes wants him at the club.