West Ham United were linked to so many Serie A players during the January market that website Tutto Mercato Web thought it would be a good idea to show how things developed.
The outlet brings a story today called ‘The background – Why West Ham has failed to take a 9 in Italy’, and goes over the Hammers’ saga to sign a centre forward.
The story starts and finishes with Marko Arnautovic.
TMW says offers from China had convinced the player to leave, but the London side would only let that happen if they got a replacement first.
There was first an attempt for Duvan Zapata, which was rejected by Atalanta.
Then a €35m offer for Genoa’s Krzysztof Piatek, who for ‘relationship and ambition’ reasons, ended up moving to Milan for the same price.
Then came the last target, Andrea Belotti. The Hammers offered €35m plus bonuses, all from the amount which would be made with Arnautovic’s sale.
Torino, however, said they wouldn’t let the striker go for less than €60m.
That’s how the ‘soap opera’ came to an end, with Arnautovic signing a contract extension, which according to TMW doesn’t come any close to the figures offered by the Chinese sides.