COMMENT By Harvey Byrne
West Ham completed the signing of Italy international striker Simone Zaza before Wednesday’s transfer deadline and he looks set to walk straight into the starting line-up.
The east London side confirmed the arrival of the 25-year-old on Sunday, who has joined on a season-long loan deal from Juventus that has the potential to smash their transfer record.
Hammers joint owner David Sullivan also revealed that Zaza is fit and ready to lead the line as early as West Ham’s next match against Watford.
Slaven Bilic has brought thirteen players into his side this summer, although Toni Martinez and Domingos Quina have joined up with the club’s development squad.
The Croatian boss looked to build a large squad for the Europa League, but the club suffered an early exit from Europe’s competition.
However, he still has a formidable side to take on the Premier League and compete on all fronts with the FA Cup and EFL Cup also to contend for.
West Ham announced the signing of experienced full-back Alvaro Arbeloa on deadline-day, but he is expected to act as cover to up-and-coming star Sam Byram.
Winston Reid, Angelo Ogbonna and Aaron Cresswell will make up the rest of the defence giving it a similar feel to the last campaign with James Collins, Reece Oxford and Arthur Masuako all providing defensive cover.
Bilic also looks set to stick with the midfield duo of captain Mark Noble and Cheikhou Kouyate with new signing Havard Nordtveit covering the two.
The Hammers fans will be especially excited with the way that their front four looks.
Established stars Manuel Lanzini and Dimitri Payet are set to start on the wing providing a lot of creative flair, while new record signing Andre Ayew will pose a threat to all opposition down the middle following a successful campaign with Swansea last term.
However, the striker position boasts the star of the show in Zaza, as he looks to replace former record signing and injury plagued Andy Carroll in the starting lineup.
In other West Ham team news, Hammers defender Doneil Henry has joined Danish side AC Horsens on a season-long loan deal.