West Ham United have been dealt a massive blow in their pursuit to sign Odsonne Edouard this week…
According to Football Insider, the 23-year-old Celtic forward has edged closer towards a move to the Irons’ Premier League rivals Leicester City as they look to conduct their business early.
It’s claimed that the Midlands outfit have made progress over signing Edouard in recent days and that Brendan Rodgers is keen to re-sign the Frenchman, having managed him at Parkhead.
There is hope that the Foxes can beat the likes of West Ham and Arsenal to a deal this upcoming transfer window.
This will come as a crushing blow not just to West Ham fans who have been craving the addition of a prolific marksman such as Edouard, but to David Moyes as well.
In mid-April, the same source suggested that the Hammers were the front-runners to secure the France under-21 international this summer. Football Insider claimed that the east London club were ‘laying the groundwork’ to make their move and that they were hopeful of securing him.
Edouard has made clear his intentions to leave the Hoops this summer, which has opened up a potential transfer tussle in the Premier League, with many teams eyeing up a move for him. He is thought to be available for around £15m to £20m, as per The Sun.
It’s no secret that Moyes is desperate for a striker, it’s pretty much the only position in which they have been linked with an array of names, ranging from Chelsea’s Tammy Abraham to Czech starlet Adam Hlozek.
The 58-year-old has only had one senior striker available to him since January, when the club’s hierarchy sanctioned the exit of club-record flop Sebastian Haller to Ajax after just 18 months at the club. It left him with only an injury-prone Michail Antonio, yet he still guided them into the Europa League.
A player of Edouard’s calibre would be the perfect frontline signing to bolster their claims heading into next season after the 23-year-old talisman scored 22 times in all competitions this term, adding to his 28 goals and 19 assists from 2019/20.
Similarly, ex-Hammers striker Frank McAvennie believes he’s a “wonderful talent,” which should have the London Stadium big wigs wanting him even more considering the Scotsman knows a thing or two about being a top striker for West Ham.
It’s not just his ability to score goals which is so appealing. Not only has he been said to have “that bit of magic in his feet” by former Celtic and Scotland forward Frank McGarvey but his movement and ability to read the game are also just a further two hugely appealing attributes.
Speaking to BBC, Edouard’s former France youth coach Jean-Claude Giuntini claimed: “He had the confidence and the obsession with scoring all great strikers need. He never doubts his qualities. But this behaviour can create panic – for the opposition defenders.
“He had an excellent sense of anticipation which gave him a remarkable ability to read play. And he had a considerable skill for shooting – his efforts were targeted, precise and powerful.”
All in all, Moyes could live to regret West Ham’s failure to clinch him as their top-flight rivals hone in on a move for the “unstoppable” Edouard. He could well have been the missing piece of the jigsaw up top, especially considering he’s available for half the price of an Abraham.
It seems likely that the Irons will miss out on a bargain solution to their striking woes and that’ll leave their manager reeling. Moyes better hope the Frenchman doesn’t bang one in at the London Stadium next season.