After scoring just 14 goals from 50 appearances for Hull City, West Ham United moved into the transfer market to secure the services of Nikica Jelavic on September 1st 2015.
With Slaven Bilic’s appointment fresh in mind, the Hammers faithful were feeling optimistic for the season ahead but the signing of Jelavic curbed their enthusiasm somewhat.
The signings of high calibre talents in Dimitri Payet, Manuel Lanzini and Alex Song hinted at a glowing season for the club, so it’s no surprise that Jelavic’s arrival was viewed as a mediocre acquisition which didn’t align with the new era.
Unsurprisingly, plenty of supporters had reservations about Jelavic when the club confirmed his arrival…
— Jack Carrington (@Carrassss) September 1, 2015
— Joe Giles (@Joe_Gilez_Giles) September 1, 2015
@davidgold another middle finger to the academy with this signing
— James Livings (@Livings82) September 1, 2015
@SkySportsNewsHQ Dreadful player
— Scott Mcilquham (@Mcilquham21) September 1, 2015
@whufc_official poor signing but better than Maiga/Cole
— Liam (@liamions) September 1, 2015
@whufc_official not too sure on this one but least we are signing early
— MrsHammer (@05Jemma) September 1, 2015
@jsullivanwhu terrible signing
— Tommy Oriel (KAKED) (@tommy_oriel) September 1, 2015
@jsullivanwhu bad signing
— Tommy smith (@Tommy19smith) September 1, 2015
There was a contingent of West Ham supporters who were pleased with his deadline day arrival as they saw him as a strong backup player.
The acquisition saw Bilic link up with his compatriot in east London, but ultimately their Croatian connection failed to help the centre-forward find his goal-scoring touch.
With Andy Carroll, Enner Valencia and Diafra Sakho firmly ahead of him in the pecking order, Jelavic made just one start in the Premier League and came off the bench on a further twelve occasions before his time at the club came to a premature end less than six months later.
Indeed, Jelavic was sold to Chinese outfit Beijing Reinhe in February 2016 after an underwhelming spell with the Hammers, and he has remained in China ever since leaving the Premier League.
Ultimately, Jelavic went against the grain during a period of transition for West Ham in which they were striving to step up a level, and it was a deal which supporters were well within their rights to criticise.
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