The West Ham United fans in the Transfer Tavern are hoping their club will announce the identity of their new manager within the next few days, and they are also hoping to see a handful of new players arrive during the summer window.
Following David Moyes’ departure, the topic of who will take over at the London Stadium has dominated the pub talk amongst the resident Hammers faithful propping up our bar. Rafa Benitez has been strongly linked with the vacant managerial position this week, but regardless of who takes over at West Ham, there is reason to suggest they should target another key Newcastle individual this summer, namely Ayoze Perez.
According to reports from the Spanish media outlet Mundo Deportivo, Real Betis are lining up a bid for the Spanish number ten this summer, but West Ham should hijack Betis’ bid in order to bolster their options in attacking midfield.
After enduring a slow opening to the campaign and taking plenty of criticism from the Newcastle supporters, Perez demonstrated his goal-scoring instincts and guile in the final-third during the final weeks of the season by notching 6 goals and providing 1 assist from 8 outings in the Premier League.
The Spanish midfielder’s ability to drift into space in and around the penalty area and instinctively find the back of the net became increasingly apparent as the season went on, and now he has found his feet in the top-flight he could become a consistent 10-15 goal a season player in the years to come.
With that in mind, West Ham should attempt to lure him to the London Stadium this summer, as they have been lacking options in attacking midfield aside from the likes of Marko Arnautovic and Manuel Lanzini.
Considering there is little to split West Ham and Newcastle apart at this moment in time, it will certainly be a difficult task for the Hammers to convince Perez to make a transfer this summer, but the appointment of a world class manager, the lure of the capital and a significant pay-rise could sway his decision.
Newcastle will be eager to hold on to their top-goalscorer to ensure they build upon their successful return to the Premier League, but with interest beginning to emerge from Spain, convincing him to remain at St James’ could prove to be an extremely difficult task this summer.
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