Hammers man wanted move, club priced out

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West Ham United moved a number of players on in the summer.

The Hammers were not all that active when it came to bringing players in – signing just Tomas Soucek on a permanent deal and Vladimir Coufal for £5.4m.

But when it came to shifting the deadwood, the Irons did some excellent work.

Grady Diangana, Albian Ajeti, Jordan Hugill and Josh Cullen all left for fees, moving to West Bromwich Albion, Celtic, Norwich City and Anderlecht respectively.

Roberto left for Real Valladolid on a free transfer, while Felipe Anderson moved to FC Porto on loan.

Pablo Zabaleta, Carlos Sanchez, and Jack Wilshere were all released on free transfers, shifting significant sums from the wage bill.

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However, there could have been an even bigger departure.

Telefoot, via Inside Futbol, claims that Marseille explored the possibility of signing Sebastien Haller on a permanent deal.

The striker was said to be keen on the idea of a move to his native France, but the transfer fee the Hammers were set to demand priced the Ligue 1 club out of a deal.

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West Ham paid £45m to sign Haller from Borussia Monchengladbach and he scored seven goals last season; he already has one league goal this term too.

Haller signed a contract until 2024 when he joined the club and is valued at €36m (£32.6m) by Transfermarkt.

One can imagine the Hammers demanding a similar fee to that when Marseille asked the question.

GIVEMESPORT’S Harry Sherlock says…

Haller was the subject of huge investment from West Ham and they aren’t about to let him go on the cheap.

While his performances last season may well have somewhat lowered his value, the Irons are still able to demand a significant fee.

He has a long-term contract and the Irons were under no pressure to sell, especially given the range of departures in the summer.

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Had the money come in early, one could make the argument that the Hammers could have used it to strengthen.

But the interest was late in the window, and, as it was, made next to no sense for the east Londoners.

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