A new name has emerged in West Ham’s search for a striker this summer…
According to Claret and Hugh, Sheffield United marksman Oliver McBurnie could be of interest to David Moyes, but he is thought to be just one of several targets as the 58-year-old looks to bolster his frontline before next season.
The 24-year-old has been linked with Scottish Premiership champions Rangers in recent weeks, with the Daily Mail claiming that he is thought to be valued at around £15m despite the Blades’ relegation to the Championship.
Whilst it’s no secret that Moyes is desperate to find a new striker in the upcoming window, it’s hard to believe that McBurnie would be the answer after an abysmal campaign both on and off the pitch at Bramall Lane.
In 25 appearances in all competitions, the 17-cap Scotland international found the net just once, but his season was marred by controversy after he was arrested when footage of an altercation surfaced on social media, as per BBC.
Moyes has never been one to risk tarnishing the reputation of the club, so these reports are hard to believe, and it’s not like McBurnie’s goal record in the Premier League has been good enough to look past that either.
In some ways, the Hammers could be looking at another Jordan Hugill situation here.
The former Preston man was signed for £10m as Moyes’ second signing at the club in 2018, even though he only bagged 30 goals in 114 appearances in the Championship. His time at the London Stadium was instantly forgettable, playing a grand total of 22 minutes for the club and failing to hit the net.
Similarly, on top of his one Premier League goal all season, McBurnie’s record isn’t outstanding. As per Transfermarkt, the 24-year-old has found the net 75 times in 203 career appearances, a respectable but unspectacular tally.
Former Scotland international and Manchester United midfielder Michael Stewart deemed the Blades striker “simply not good enough” back in November, whilst he also slammed him in an article for The Scottish Sun in which he wrote: “For a £20million striker he can’t run, he can’t hold up the ball, he doesn’t link well, he doesn’t shoot. He’s simply not strong enough to play that role.”
Now valued at just €15m (£12.5m) by CIES Football Observatory, Moyes is certainly playing with fire if the interest in McBurnie is genuine. Considering that the Irons have been heavily linked to plenty of other centre-forward candidates, including Adam Hlozek and Tammy Abraham, then the manager should see sense sooner rather than later and leave the Sheffield United forward where he is.