It’s another transfer window, and once again West Ham are searching for a striker and a midfielder. It’s good to be in familiar territory.
A striker was on some West Ham fans’ wish list at the start of the transfer season, but that’s suddenly been upgraded to a top priority. Sebastien Haller‘s move to Ajax leaves West Ham’s already thin squad looking very bare in the forward third.
So, using the tools available to me (Football Manager 2021’s extensive database) I have highlighted four strikers that could come in and fit West Ham’s counterattacking and mobility focuses system.
Now obviously I don’t have much insight into player personalities and what will work where, so my focus as far as fit is trying to replicate strikers we’ve had in the past few seasons, particularly under Moyes, that have worked. Thankfully that means I’ve only got to compare to two strikers, Marko Arnautovic and Michail Antonio.
These two strikers are certainly not identical, but they have a lot of common attributes. Pacey enough to trouble defenders, aggressive in their defensive efforts and with a high work rate. Where they differ is in things such as aerial ability and passing effectiveness. But what Arnie lacked in aerial ability compared to Antonio he made up for in creativity.
So I used FM2021’s editor to search for players with solid pace, acceleration, finishing, strength and work rate, whilst also filtering for potential ability (a judgement on how good a player can get) and age. I also did some sensible edits of my own, so, unfortunately, there’s no recommendation of Mbappe in this article, despite him ticking all of the boxes…
I also tried to take into account Brexit rules that may impact, so these players are from top leagues across Europe. I’ve also tried to stay away from the Championship and players there because these players are linked with us anyway due to Moyes’ preferred avenues, so I am trying to cover some more ground!