Stuart Pearce has now said he’s been really impressed with West Ham United centre-back Nayef Aguerd.
Speaking on TalkSPORT (20/2 9:13am), Pearce described the Moroccan international as the club’s best signing this season.
At the end of the summer transfer window, it looked like there could be plenty of contenders for that award.
Gianluca Scamacca arrived from Italy with a big reputation having just broken into the national team.
He had scored goals for fun in Serie A, but has struggled with his fitness at the London Stadium.
Lucas Paqueta was in the starting XI for Brazil at the World Cup, but also struggled to adapt to life in the Premier League.
It’s a credit to Nayef Aguerd that he’s come out on top of these players, especially after his injury issues.
However, West Ham have been well below par this season, making it difficult for David Moyes’s new recruits to get up to speed.
Stuart Pearce made a point of singling out Aguerd for praise, and personally scouted him for West Ham.
He was convinced after watching him last season that he would be a great signing for the Hammers.
Pearce names Aguerd West Ham’s best signing this season
Pearce was asked on TalkSPORT what’s gone wrong with West Ham’s recruitment and said: “I think it’s players not gelling particularly well.
“[Nayef] Aguerd who’s probably been from the outside people would say that he’s been the pick of the signings that have come through the door.
“I went out to France to watch him on the last day of the season last year, and was impressed with him.
“And then he gets injured in pre-season up at Rangers and he’s out for 12 weeks, that’s a real blow.”
Aguerd was sensational at the World Cup, when many West Ham fans had barely seen him feature for the club.
Martin Keown recently described him as a ‘revelation’, and he’s been one of the few bright sparks at the London Stadium this season.
Aguerd now has the task of dragging the rest of the West Ham defence up to his level.
If David Moyes can at least make them more watertight at the back, it will relieve some of the pressure on their forwards.
West Ham are struggling at both ends of the table, but Pearce believes they’ve at least found a gem in Aguerd.
If the unthinkable happens and they do end up going down, they may struggle to hold onto him in the summer.