January wasn’t exactly the best month for West Ham, what with their best player (at the time) Dimitri Payet forcing a move away from the club, eventually leaving for €30m and returning to Marseille.
The days following the transfer were ugly, with the Hammers willing to replace any ‘Payet’ for £20, and most members of the board publicly criticising the player for his behaviour.
Treated almost like a God at Upton Park and then the London Stadium, the 29-year-old is yet to recapture his old form at Marseille, which has led to a few back in France questioning whether or not the fee paid by the Ligue 1 club was perhaps a bit too excessive.
A guest on Stade 2 in France, new Marseille owner Frank McCourt was asked this exact question on Sunday.
He answered, relayed by Le10 Sport: “If I’d thought he was too expensive, I wouldn’t have given it the green light. I think it was a very good deal. It’s a big sign that we can bring great talent to Marseille. We want big players here.”
Since his return, Payet has scored one goal, a heavily deflected free-kick, in six appearances, and was very, very quiet in Marseille 5-1 thumping at the hands of Paris Saint-Germain on Sunday night.
During his time at West Ham, the attacking midfielder scored 18 goals and assisted teammates 25 times in 66 appearances.