By Danny Wright
Slaven Bilic has confirmed that West Ham lost out to their Premier League rivals Everton in the race to sign Sandro Ramirez earlier this summer.
The 22-year-old striker signed for Everton in a fee widely reported to be worth £5.2million from La Liga side Malaga after they activated release clause in his contract.
The Toffees have been ruthless in the summer transfer window, strengthening their squad with a host of players including Sandro, who is the only forward they have signed since Romelu Lukaku’s switch to Manchester United.
Bilic, 48, has since bolstered his attack with Javier Hernandez, who completed his £16million move from Bayer Leverkusen last month, but like Sandro he failed to find the net in his league debut at the weekend.
Lukaku bagged a brace in his Premier League debut for Man United, and Bilic has since said that although Everton’s new Spanish striker is nothing like the Belgian international, he did add that he can bring a lot of pace to Ronald Koeman’s side.
“Ramirez from Malaga came in, he was in Barcelona and we wanted him but he chose Everton,” said the Irons boss, as quoted by the Liverpool Echo.
“He is a quick player and has no traits like Lukaku.
“They lost his strength, but gained speed [in Ramirez].”
Former Barcelona striker Sandro was in hot form for Malaga last term as he scored 16 goals in 31 appearances across all competitions.
However he is yet to find the net in three matches for the Toffees.
In other West Ham news, the Hammers are confident of sealing a deal to land this club record signing within days.