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A £75m Gamble That Pellegrini And Husillos Are Hoping Will Pay Off

Fornals

West Ham had been in negotiations with Celta Vigo about signing both Maxi Gomez and Stanislav Lobotka, with a deal likely to be worth almost £60m.

However, it seems a move for Lobotka has hit trouble and the Hammers are now focused on securing Villarreal midfielder Pablo Fornals instead.

The Yellow Submarine reportedly value the Spaniard at €35m (£31m) and along with Gomez (£44m), we are looking at a combined £75m outlay on the two players.

Considering the reported limited transfer budget, such a spending spree will likely have a knock-on effect of a number of players being sold to balance the books.

The likes of Javier Hernandez, Jordan Hugill, Sam Byram and Reece Oxford, as well as the likes of Pedro Obiang and Carlos Sanchez, could all depart in order for this deal to be paid for.

On the face of it, bringing in two talented players, while ridding the squad of some of its deadwood looks like a very good decision.

Gomez is a very promising young striker, having scored 13 goals in La Liga last season despite his team struggling against relegation.

Fornals, meanwhile, will provide some added creativity from midfield, having scored five goals and provided six assists in a number 10 role for Villarreal.

At 22 and 23 respectively, the pair are still pretty young and have the potential to develop into very good players over the next few seasons.

However, manager Manuel Pellegrini and sporting director Mario Husillos know they will have very little room for manoeuvre in the transfer market if both deals are signed off.

Even after selling a number of fringe players, there will be limited funds to shore up other areas of the pitch. The club’s weakness at left-back will likely remain, while the vulnerable defence, which conceded 55 goals last season, will likely survive the summer relatively unchanged.

Unless Gold and Sullivan are sitting on a pot of gold that they will hand out for more transfer dealings, Pellegrini and Husillos are taking a gamble by putting all their faith in these two signings working.

That isn’t me trying to put a negative take on the deals. They are both very good players as I have already mentioned, but there’s no escaping the fact that it will give the club very little flexibility in the transfer market unless more sales (such as Arnautovic and even Lanzini) occur before the window closes. Hopefully, it improves an inspired gamble rather than a fatal mistake.