Sometimes football clubs have to play the long game to get a player that they really want.
They’ll spend time laying the groundwork and doing all they can to ensure the player has no issues or barriers to stop a move happening.
That can, sometimes, involve them signing another player to accommodate the move. This can sometimes be a younger sibling, a friend, or even just someone who speaks the same language.
These players will often be squad players and nothing more, but the cost of bringing them in to get the bigger fish is worth it in the long run.
And in an interview with La Voz de Galicia today, that very notion was put to striker Borja Iglesias regarding his friend Roberto.
Roberto, a goalkeeper, joined West Ham earlier in the summer transfer window. The 33-year-old arrived on a free transfer from Espanyol and will play back up to Lukasz Fabianski.
Now, Roberto happens to be best friends with Iglesias. The two live in the same building and are quite close. Indeed, Iglesias considers him like an uncle.
The newspaper picked up on this and suggested that the two could end up at West Ham together, but Iglesias rejected the notion.
When asked if the two would be linking up again, he answered: “In principle no. There is nothing like that.” He did, however; admit that he was ‘sorry’ to see his friend depart.
The interesting part is, West Ham actually need a striker this summer. Andy Carroll and Lucas Perez have left, and Javier Hernandez is up for sale.
Iglesias, who scored 17 goals in La Liga last season and 20 in all competitions, is definitely a player who would catch Manuel Pellegrini’s eye, given the Chilean’s time working in Spain.
Signing Roberto, a close friend, does indeed look like a possible tactical move in that light. He’d not only help his friend adapt to life in England but convince him of the move in the first place. Iglesias seems to reject that notion, but this may be a rumour worth keeping an eye on nonetheless.