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What’s next for Jordan Hugill after becoming a West Ham outcast?

The former Preston striker has had a difficult time since his January move.

Max Cohen

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Photo: Getty Images

When Jordan Hugill signed for West Ham United on January 31, many in east London had high hopes for the former Preston North End striker.

However, nearly three months later, the 25-year-old striker has played a grand total of 22 minutes for the Hammers and registered no goals.

The West Ham outcast must now look for a move back to the Championship to end his Premier League exile.

Hugill earned his big move to the top flight after an impressive first half of the 2017/18 season that saw him score ten times for the Lilywhites. The forward was coming off a productive 2016/17 season when he bagged 12 goals and was Preston’s top scorer.

(Photo by Steve Bardens/Getty Images)

But his time at the London Stadium has been a deeply disappointing one. Hugill has played on a paltry three occasions for the Hammers: ten minutes against Brighton, two minutes against Watford, and ten minutes against Southampton.

The English striker was always going to find things difficult making the step up to the Premier League, but few expected him to struggle this much. It is telling that even when main striker Andy Carroll was out injured, Hugill was not granted a larger role in the first team.

With the season winding down, the ex-Preston man must be desperately searching for an escape from his West Ham nightmare.

(Photo by Dan Istitene/Getty Images)

Starved of playing time and vital confidence, Hugill would do well to seek a return to the Championship. With his physical style of play and target man attributes, the forward would slot in seamlessly in many a Championship squad.

One team that has been linked with the West Ham man is Tony Pulis’ Middlesbrough; a club that would be a perfect setting for Hugill. Pulis cherishes hefty strikers that can bully defenders and lead the line like Hugill can, and would certainly grant him significant time on the pitch.

After his failed Premier League step-up, Jordan Hugill would do well to save his career and make the switch to the Riverside to link up with Tony Pulis.

Max is an 18-year-old football journalist studying at the University of Pennsylvania. Max specialises in English football, is an avid follower of Fulham, and co-hosts a weekly Fulham podcast. He is also a politics reporter and deputy news editor for The Daily Pennsylvanian.

West Ham United

Reuniting Marko Arnautovic and Xherdan Shaqiri could lead West Ham to top half finish

Josh Kerr

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Xherdan Shaqiri
Photo: Getty Images

The 2017/18 season represents one of the most bizarre for West Ham supporters as, despite finishing 13th, the club will see their third managerial appointment in just seven months, with Manuel Pellegrini the latest manager to take the reigns in East London.

One of the biggest tasks for the Chilean tactician will be getting the summer transfer window right. This will involve strengthening in key areas if the club are to meet fans’ expectations and achieve a top-half finish next season.

The previous window for the Hammers initially looked promising, with some proven Premier League stars joining the London Stadium, including the likes of Javier Hernandez, Pablo Zabaleta and Joe Hart.

However, Hernandez has endured most of his time on the bench, while Joe Hart’s terrible form has seen him axed from Gareth Southgate’s England squad. Pablo Zabaleta can hold his head high with the Argentine already considered a fan favourite.

Marko Arnautovic was undoubtedly the star arrival of the summer window and, despite the club paying a record £20 million for the Austrian international, his form under David Moyes justified such a high fee.

The 29-year-old finished the season for the Hammers with 11 goals and six assists in 31 league games, also securing the club’s Player of the Year award.  

Arnautovic will have a huge role to play next season and getting him the perfect strike partner will be crucial in whether Pellegrini is considered a success or not.

One man who could prove to be the ideal foil for the West Ham star next season, is his former teammate and Stoke City forward Xherdan Shaqiri.

According to reports from The Sun, the Switzerland international is available for as little as £12 million, giving West Ham little reason not to swoop for the former Bayern Munich prodigy.

The speedy trickster finished the 2017/18 campaign with an impressive tally of eight goals and seven assists in 36 Premier League appearances but couldn’t help Stoke fight off relegation.

Under a manager like Pellegrini, who likes to play an attacking brand of football, the 26-year-old star could flourish to a great extent. His pace, skills and eye for goal are qualities that Hammers fans should not overlook.

Shaqiri has what it takes to make a difference for the Hammers next season and, having already played alongside Arnautovic for two seasons at Stoke, the duo will know each other’s game very well.

They could form a partnership that helps fire West Ham to a top half finish next term.

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West Ham United

Manuel Pellegrini should target reunion with Ignacio Camacho this summer

The new West Ham boss managed Camacho at Malaga.

Mathew Coull

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West Ham United have appointed Manuel Pellegrini as their new manager and the Chilean is set to be handed a big transfer kitty to try and turn things around at the London Stadium. But where should he look to bring in improvements? As so many managers do, Pellegrini might go to his past. He has already been linked with former goalkeeper Willy Caballero and midfield maestro Yaya Toure. But if West Ham really want to look at some of his former players, one excellent option is Spanish midfielder, Ignacio Camacho.

The 28-year-old midfielder was a pivotal figure in Pellegrini’s midfield during his time at Malaga. The orchestrator of the side from the centre of the park it was during his time at Malaga that he received his one and only cap for Spain.

Often linked with a move to the Premier League, with the likes of Liverpool, West Brom and Watford mentioned over the years, Camacho finally did leave Malaga last summer.

(Photo credit should read CLAUDIO REYES/AFP/Getty Images)

He joined Bundesliga side Wolfsburg, taking over the captaincy at the club, and was supposed to lead them back into European football.

That certainly did not happen.

In the end, Wolfsburg only survived relegation by the skin of their teeth. Camacho, however, is fairly blameless. He underwent ankle surgery in October that saw his appearances diminish. He is now fully fit and played in both legs of Wolfsburg’s successful relegation play-off clash with Kiel.

West Ham, however, could surely try and lure him to England. The presence of his former boss Pellegrini would be a massive attraction for the player, who cost Wolfsburg a fee reported by ESPN to be in the region of €10 million (£8.8 million).

(Photo credit should read GUENTER SCHIFFMANN/AFP/Getty Images)

The Hammers need another central midfielder and Camacho’s ability to play in a back three also makes him a double threat.

His vision, passing ability and leadership qualities would all be greatly received at West Ham where Pellegrini would hopefully get the best out of him once again.

If City are going to look at former Pellegrini players this summer, then Camacho should top that list.

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West Ham United

Manuel Pellegrini move for former player Willy Caballero makes sense

The Argentine goalkeeper is currently at Chelsea but West Ham may make a move.

Mathew Coull

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West Ham United need a new goalkeeper this summer. Last year they signed Joe Hart to replace a reasonably in form Adrian. The England stopper flopped at the London Stadium. Adrian, however, has not shown some of his previous better form since coming back into the side.

The Hammers can now start planning for the upcoming season and begin thinking about potential transfer options. They have appointed a new manager and Manuel Pellegrini is expected to get plenty of backing in the transfer market this summer.

One player that he might want to consider signing is a man he has worked with on two separate occasions in the past.

Willy Caballero is currently the back-up to Thibaut Courtois at Chelsea. The Argentine stopper may be 36-years-old, but he still has plenty to offer. When it comes to saving penalties, there may not be anyone better in world football today.

(Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

Pellegrini is the man who first brought the veteran stopper to England. The Chilean signed his fellow South American as back-up to Joe Hart back in 2014. He has also previously worked with him at Malaga and, as reported by The Sun, a reunion at West Ham does now seem like a possibility.

It would be a smart piece of business for West Ham. Caballero is surely not happy sitting on the bench at Stamford Bridge. At West Ham, regardless of whether they bring in another new face or not, he is more likely to get first-team football and enjoy the latter stages of his career.

It is a deal that makes sense on paper and would not come at a heavy price for West Ham. Fans should hope that Pellegrini can put this one together in the coming weeks.

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