Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Sakho Exit as West Ham Scramble to Make Signings; Early Hart Exit Unlikely

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Sakho Exit as West Ham Scramble to Make Signings; Early Hart Exit Unlikely

Article excerpt

Byline: Ken Dyer

WEST HAM are desperately trying to sign a striker and a midfielder before the transfer window closes at 11pm on Wednesday as they try to strengthen a squad missing 14 players through injury or suspension.

With front man Diafra Sakho's move to Rennes confirmed today, Javier Hernandez remains the only fit senior striker available as manager David Moyes attempts to pick a team for tomorrow's Premier League match against Crystal Palace.

His task, already difficult, became acute when midfielder Pedro Obiang was carried off with a serious knee injury during the FA Cup fourth--round defeat at Wigan, while wing--back Arthur Masuaku faces a six--game ban after being sent off for spitting at an opponent on Saturday.

David Sullivan, who together with co--owner David Gold was confronted by angry fans after the 2--0 defeat, has issued a statement assuring supporters he is working "night and day" in an effort to recruit players and that funds are available.

With Andy Carroll, Marko Arnautovic, Andre Ayew and Manuel Lanzini all injured, the situation is desperate but Sullivan is aware how difficult it is to make positive signings in January.

The latest player linked with a move is former Southampton striker Graziano Pelle, who is at Chinese Super League club Shandong Luneng but the Italian's wages, around PS250,000 per week, would be an insurmountable obstacle. Danny Ings remains a possibility with Liverpool prepared to allow the former Burnley striker to go out on loan.

However, a late move for another Liverpool forward, Daniel Sturridge, is less likely given his injury record.

On Friday, West Ham signed Inter Milan midfielder Joao Mario on loan but need at least one more player for that area of the squad, especially as Obiang's knee injury could keep him out for the rest of the season.

It is understood West Ham have already failed with a PS15million bid for Fulham captain Tom Cairney. Fulham rate the 27-yea-old Scotland midfielder at PS30m and are in a strong position as it is only six months since he signed a new contract until 2021, with an option to extend it by a further 12 months. …

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