So This Is Another New Striker For West Ham Utd Next Season

There are statistics and there are statistics, but whatever way you look at the numbers it is hard to conceal a 'serial' goal scorer, as they say form is temporary class is permanent! Therefore to any number crunching geek or punter who likes his 'stats', Jonathan Calleri looked like a smart loan signing from Boca Juniors, especially given his prolific rate of scoring top flight goals, but his impact at the London Stadium has been unexceptional.
Results from this Saturday's FA Cup games were amazing to say the least, and although eventually failing in the last few minutes against Middlesbrough, Oxford United nearly got over the line helped in no small way by one Antonio Martínez López. Since his arrival from Valencia the 19 year old marked his Premier League 2 debut with a goal against Stoke City, in a 3–0 home win. After scoring 7 goals in 7 games for West Ham United U23 during the first-half of the season, he suffered two injury set-backs, the first left him sidelined for six weeks, unfortunately with the player due to return to action on the 21st of November, Martínez suffered yet another injury. His prolific goal scoring continued into January and he had racked up a total of 12 goals from 11 games before being sent out on loan to Oxford. Toni, as he likes to be called, is the real deal and we would not bet against him having a big impact in the Barclays Premier League next season.
West Ham United's player recruitment has come in for a considerable amount of criticism, possibly rightly so, but Toni Martinez was an inspired signing. Tony Henry, Hammers director of player recruitment, must sometimes be scratching his head, and Simone Zaza probably is the the main cause, such a high profile failure muddied the water with regards to the 'positive' business that Henry has quietly undertaken. Martinez has all the potential to 'do a Vardy', his speed and power coupled with an almost arrogant self belief could devastate top flight defenders, after all "they don't like it up'em!" Martinez possesses phenomenal ball control whilst running at speed and is equally at ease on either flank, at only 5' 11'' he is obviously not a big target man in the Andy Carroll mould, but his pace could carve teams up.
Calleri will return to Boca or go elsewhere at the end of the season, so where do West Ham United go in the striker department? Unfortunately the powers that be at West Ham, who are usually so astute, will make a rookie error by pursuing yet another 'marquee' signing, this will almost inevitably end up being an ex-military bivouac! After all there is no need to sell season tickets, the vast amount having already been sold in advance, so there is no need for a 'phoney' war on spending, maybe the club got ahead of itself in it's aspirations for this season and the pursuit of that top striker but are things really that bad?
Who is there to lead the line? On the club's books as out and out strikers we have, Andy Carroll, Diafra Sakho, Toni Martinez, Ashley Fletcher and we'll get to the other one later, if only Carroll and Sakho could remain fit everything would be tickety boo, however the grim shadow of injury is always likely to fall on Big Andy followed very quickly by Daffy who still seems to have the JuJu in him courtesy of his national team's doctor propensity for planetary back re-alignment! Andre Ayew's name should be mentioned as well, although he is obviously not an out and out striker, so there are four to five players if fit to fill one or two places at the most, oh and by the way do you remember Enner Valencia? Ironically Enner is on hot weather training with his Everton colleagues in Dubai, just a stones throw from where West Ham themselves are training, perhaps one or two observers will find the situation rather strange that Hammers could have one of their strikers out on loan to a rival club who are well above them in the Barclays Premier League, in hindsight letting him go was a big mistake, he could not have done worse than Zaza and would have provided a mobile back up for the team's perennial injury victims.
The need for a new centre back and right back are arguably more important than chasing the top striker rainbow, speed and power will get you nearly there in the modern game and energy levels have to be off the scale, but a pragmatic view is also extremely important, Hammers need to set out their stall next year based on a solid defence, which is something Slaven Billic should relish, there is enough energy and youthful pace available to then hit teams on the break which happened so successfully last season.
With the impressive London Stadium from which, despite it's gremlins, West Ham have gained global exposure, the club have a vehicle to push on with. It is imperative that this 'gift horse' is exploited to the full before Chelsea and Tottenham are able to match the stadium's capacity, the couple of years that it will take to finalise their constructions should see West Ham push on to be at least top of the Premier League's second table ie: 7th place and with luck a bit higher, running before walking.
Fans themselves need to be realistic and not push the board for ludicrously expensive and exotic signings, there have already been signs that the club has wised up when it comes to transfers, untried foreign imports are a risk at best and need to be balanced by less spectacular but more reliable players who can hit the ground running such as Fonte and Snodgrass.
Unless the club experience a spectacular loss of form a new season in the top flight is guaranteed, and you can guarantee the atmosphere will be electric at the London Stadium as already it has started to feel more like home as fans get used to their surroundings and fellow supporters (we have a wonderful must be ex-speed freak nutter in a pink shirt near us who is almost worth the admission fee alone for his 'comments' to the away supporters) The players will feel more comfortable and the away teams will have 'lost their cherry' when it comes to the 'London Stadium Experience', so perhaps the playing field will be more level.
All in all there are reasons to be cheerful, and let's hope bloody England don't come calling for Big Andy or any of the rest of the squad and that the club doesn't set out on a quest for the unicorn striker - Ed

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Comments

harrythehammers's picture

Martinez is a must for me for next season. However with Carroll and Sakho being injury prown we need another quality striker. Agree need to strenthen back four and Noble isnt going to last forever so needs replacing with someone else that can show his passion but has more quality.

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26 users have voted.
asheshammer's picture

"there is no need to sell season tickets, the vast amount having already been sold in advance, so there is no need for a 'phoney' war on spending" -- I think you're right, but even if this weren't true, it's the way the board should be talking -- not like this season's "we're gonna spend £20M on a big-name striker".

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24 users have voted.
plaistow-man's picture

Rangers in the SPL had David Murray at the helm , when he brought in Graeme Souness. Sou bought Terry Butcher, Colin West and Chris Woods, it put bums on seats and in years to come Rangers bought Trevor Steven, Gary Stevens, Michael Laudrup, Paul Gascoigne and even Trevor Francis and Ray Wilkins played a part along with Mark Hately. Murray was to Rangers what Abromovic is to Chelsea. The fans demanded investment and pushed for it and eventually forced Murray out the door... the club owing millions eventually was liquidated and had to start again, had a chance to build from the bottom up and introduce youth and it failed to do so, most Rangers fans would tell you the club is a mess and has leapt from one disastrous owner to another (Whyte, Green and now Dave King) full of promises yet to deliver. It is that clubs fans keeping it afloat not the so called money men! We are lucky who we have in charge , we are lucky they invested the way they did. Do you not think some of our own fans demand the "marquee" signings ? To me the club did make moves for Lacazzete. Batshuayi etc and they were not interested. I think Ayew could come good but not worth £20m in my book but looking way back when "marquee" Goddard, McAvennie, Ward even Payet and Lanzini were hardly top of the big boys shopping list and then we have Antonio and Snodgrass solid dependable yet hardly top drawer. I do hope while we chase the dream we don't end up like Rangers and (what a difference a season makes) Leicester.

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26 users have voted.

Just read hogan was stretched off last night. Opinion is it could be a bad one. Sad to see if the boy has yet another serious injury, he was just finding his career starting to move, but very glad it's not on our books. We have far too many injury prone strikers, think we would implode if he had joined us.

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25 users have voted.
Dicks is the man's picture

injury aside he didnt look up to much tbh. think we were right to pass on him although it does make you wonder as bilic was about to sign him and certainly wanted him.

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22 users have voted.

Actually mate, the deal was set up by the board who wanted ot go through with it, and Bilic didnt rate him plain and simple. Bilic is the reason we pulled out of this one not the board.

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27 users have voted.

We all like a moan now & again about the board,but to be fair to them they got it right about hogan...
Injury prone,& it does look like its a bad one,we all know if he had joined the hammers,it would probably have happened on his debut!!

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23 users have voted.
Dicks is the man's picture

I agree ashes. its not so much the lack of spending that bothers me its the pretend nonsense that goes on from the owners. if the owners came out and said you know what financially we're not as flush as we could be so there won't be any big signings….i think we all grumble a little at wheres the cash gone? but move on and accept it. when we hear 'big name striker' and then actually hear the owners saying its lacazzete, its sturridge, its batshiwayi etc and then actually we were never in with a chance to begin with it looks so ridiculous.

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28 users have voted.
moore2come's picture

I just wish they'd all shut up. Get on with the business behind closed doors and announce deals when they're done. All this bollox through Twitter and websites just gets on my nerves

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22 users have voted.
Dicks is the man's picture

problem with martinez is will he get the chance? I've not seen anything from bilic really to tell me that he looks into the youth and reserves for answers. proof of this is calleri, zaza etc. would have been better to simply pass on both and give someone within the club a chance so not sure if bilic will give martinez a chance or not.

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40 users have voted.

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