By Alex Taylor
West Ham will pay a £4million fee to secure the signing of Jonathan Calleri from Uruguayan side Deportivo Maldonado, according to a report.
The Guardian claim that the striker has now completed a season-long loan move to the Olympic Stadium after the deal was negotiated.
This comes just hours after Slaven Billic announced that he would sign Calleri this summer, and not pursue Alexandre Lacazette’s signature.
The youngster is currently in Rio de Janeiro, and has just finished competing in the Olympic Games as part of Argentina’s Under-23 team.
“We signed Calleri. Unfortunately for him but good for us Argentina were knocked out of the Olympics on Wednesday, they didn’t pass the group stage so he should be here with us – not today, not tomorrow, but pretty soon, depending on work permit or whatever,” Bilic said on Thursday.
“We did the deal not a long time ago but not yesterday, and he is a top striker as well. You need a squad but it is also about the balance.”
The deal is the second loan move that the Hammers have paid a fee for in the current transfer window, having already secured Gokhan Tore from Besiktas for £2.5million.
The 22-year-old Argentine attacker was most recently at Sao Paulo, where he finished as top scorer in the 2016 Copa Libertadores with nine goals.
Calleri, who is yet to make any full Argentina appearances, has attracted Premier League interest since scoring 21 goals in 53 matches for former club Boca Juniors.
He has since been loaned to Sao Paulo for six months via Uruguayan club Deportivo Maldonado and 10 matches for the Brazilian side in 2016 yielded an impressive eight goals.
Bilic has been in the hunt for a proven goalscorer all summer, and has been linked with the likes of Carlos Bacca, Mario Gomes, Andre Ayew, Christian Benteke, Michy Batshuayi, , Theo Walcott as well as a sensational east London return for Carlos Tevez.
On Monday evening they announced the signing of Swansea striker Andre Ayew for £20.5million.
That breaks London club’s transfer record by £5million, as it usurps the £15.5million spent on signing Andy Carroll from Liverpool in 2013.
In other West Ham transfer news, they have revived their move for a Serie A goals ace and have a £21million bid lined up.