Diafra Sakho’s time at West Ham can only be described as a rollercoaster.
Arriving from Metz in Ligue 2, the Senegalese striker enjoyed an incredible start with the Hammers, scoring six goals in his first six starts, and stayed at the club for three and a half seasons, eventually transferring back to France with Rennes last month.
Speaking to France Football about his career, the 28-year-old revealed how his transfer from France’s second-tier to West Ham took place, and he nearly never signed at all.
He said: “Honestly, before I moved, I wanted to go to Germany. Borussia Mönchengladbach wanted me. The director of football travelled to talk with me. We’d discussed the contract, how I would play… in my head, I was happy to go.
“However, Metz were asking for €5m whereas Gladbach were ‘only’ offering €3.5m. At the last minute, West Ham arrived. They offered something and told me they had 50 games on me. My agent was hesitating and I told him that if the West Ham manager played me, he’d never take me out. That’s what happened”.
Following his outstanding debuts, Sakho ended the 2014-15 campaign with 10 league goals, his best tally for the club, as the following seasons were plagued with injuries, ending his time at the club with 24 goals in 71 games.
Now happy to be at Rennes, where he moved for £9m, the forward is hoping he’ll get enough game time to make the World Cup with his country in the summer, even if his personal goal is to win the Africa Cup of Nations in 2019.