This morning, BBC Sport reported that West Ham United striker Diafra Sakho was close to completing a £15 million move West Bromwich Albion, after having a medical at The Hawthorns. The 26-year-old, who only joined The Hammers two years ago, was a target of Baggies’ boss Tony Pulis.
However, the national broadcaster has now updated their stance on the matter claiming, in no uncertain terms, that the deal is off – seemingly West Brom pulled the plug on any potential deal.
The Baggies, then, will not be breaking their transfer record on the Senegalese international who has notched 15 league goals for West Ham, and was the French Second division player of the year in 2014.
From a West Ham point of view, it seems as if many fans want the former Metz player out of their club as soon as possible (these are the more friendly twitter responses!):
@iamdiafrasakho FFS you're literally the worst.
— Kieran (@KieranIon27) August 4, 2016
— Jamie Penfold ? (@jamie_penfold) August 4, 2016
Back to West Brom, and who should they now be looking at to replace Sakho?Following on from their interest in the 2014 Ligue 2 Player of the Year, it may not have escaped Pulis’ attention that the winner of the same award in the following season; Bristol City’s Jonathan Kodjia, who scored at The Hawthorns in the FA Cup in January, has been repeatedly linked with a move to midland rivals Aston Villa this summer.
However, since Villa signed Ross McCormack, Roberto Di Matteo’s pursuit of the Ivory Coast international has cooled. Does this leave the door open for Pulis to steal a march on Kodjia?
It would represent a bit of a gamble, considering the Paris-born striker only has one full season of English football under his belt, and speaks limited English. Nevertheless, his goal-scoring record in a struggling Championship team is very commendable, and would be a cheaper option than Sakho too.
With Saido Berahino often linked with a move away from the Hawthorns, it has been suggested in some quarters that the Baggies should look to Watford’s Odion Ighalo. However, any offers made have reportedly been rebuffed, and with the Sakho deal so close to being completed, it leaves the West Brom hierarchy in quite some state, days before the season starts.
The only good news to take from the situation for Baggies fans is that, at this moment in time, Berahino is still a West Brom player. That said, I’m not convinced how long that will last…
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