Three reasons why West Ham should sign this former PL star to finally replace Payet
COMMENT By Will Butcher
West Ham must finally replace Dimitri Payet in the summer and Real Sociedad’s Carlos Vela could be the perfect replacement.
Payet – last season’s Hammers player of the year – was sold in January to Marseille, and manager Slaven Bilic has seen the east London outfit suffer as a result.
He must be replaced if the Hammers are to put a dismal 2016-17 campaign at the London Stadium behind them, and here are three reasons why Vela – a former Gunner – would be the perfect addition.
Something to prove
Vela joined Sociedad in the summer of 2012 after struggling to have an impact in north London. He was loaned out to the the likes of West Brom and Osasuna during his time with the Gunners, before moving permanently to Sociedad. Making just 19 starts in four years after his competitive debut in August 2008, Vela could be tempted with a return to the Premier League to prove Wenger he was wrong.
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Contract until 2018
Vela, who has proven himself to be one of La Liga’s most feared attackers, has just over a year remaining on his current contract with Eusebio Sacrastan’s side. With Sociedad unlikely to want to sell the 49-time Mexico international on a free transfer, the Spanish side could offload their number 11 in the summer for a cut-price fee which would suit the Hammers after spending a lot on the likes of Andre Ayew, Robert Snodgrass and Jose Fonte this season.
He can live up to Payet
Payet was magnificent in claret and blue, renowned for his unstoppable free-kicks and ability to create something out of nothing in the final third. Without the 2016 Ballon d’Or nominee, the Hammers have lacked bite in the final third. Bringing Vela to the London Stadium could solve that problem, as the versatile attacker has had a hand in exactly one goal every two games during his time with Sociedad. Scoring 70 goals, Vela has also laid on 44 assists in 228 league and cup encounters for his current side and that form could be replicated under Bilic.
In other West Ham transfer news, this Premier League club is in pole position to sign Jermain Defoe.