While it’d be unfair to criticise the strong partnership of Declan Rice and Mark Noble in West Ham United’s engine room, it’s fair to say they didn’t contribute much going forward. Granted, the Hammers captain scored and assisted 5 goals apiece last season, but a worrying average of 0.7 and 0.3 key passes per 90min perhaps indicates a lack of attacking prowess.
Obviously, after such an expensive outlay last summer, the European dream Manuel Pellegrini has previously spoken about needs to be realised sooner rather than later. That’s got to be the target, right? Largely settled into the London Stadium, a pretty expensive squad and a big-name manager, the Europa League seems like a natural target.
Well, with that in mind, the Chilean is reportedly looking for a more complete midfielder, who can contribute at both ends of the field. According to Sky Sports, the Hammers have apparently launched a £13 million bid for Eibar’s midfielder Joan Jordan.
Now, it’s hard to deny the strength of the current midfield core but perhaps Jordan’s 4 goals and 4 assists (via Transfermarkt) for an Eibar team who only managed 46 goals last season shows he can chip in. Indeed, when you look at his superiority over Noble and Rice in terms of forward passes, chances created and shots on target (stats via Squawka), you can start to imagine him making new-boy Pablo Fornals’ creative job easier.
Andy Carroll has obviously departed and a regular source of goals were a problem for the Irons last season, with only Marko Arnautovic and Felipe Anderson reaching double figures in all competitions, so spreading strikes throughout the team might be a good idea.
When you consider the fact that they, Everton, Watford and Leicester City all scored roughly the same amount of goals in the league, getting more firepower in across the field could give West Ham a better chance of competing in any mini-league below the top six, vying for that seventh spot or beyond.
WhoScored pinpoint the Spaniard’s strengths in taking long-shots, key passes and dribbling through the middle, useful tools for a side potentially looking to improve their engine room.
Moreover, when you look at his superior 1.8 tackles, 0.9 interceptions and 1.4 dribbles per 90 mins compared to Noble’s average 1.5 tackles, 0.7 interceptions and 1.2 dribbles, clearly Jordan’s got the skillset to go either way to help the side.
Hammers fans, do you think Jordan can potentially create a more complete midfield next season? Join the discussion by commenting below…Like what the TT have on offer? Sign up for more notifications!