Sam Allardyce has defended the club’s transfer activity during the summer and insists the club tried hard to bring in another striker.
With Andy Carroll picking up another foot injury facing more weeks/months on the sidelines, Allardyce has been criticised for not bringing in adequate back-up during the transfer window to compensate for when Carroll got injured.
But Allardyce insists the club tried extremely hard to secure at least one of their targets and is disappointed that he wasn’t successful in bring any of them to the Boleyn ground.
He said in his London Evening Standard column: “Just to confirm something, we did try very heard to get another striker in on loan during the window.
“Jermain Defoe, Loic Remy, Romelu Lukaku, Demba Ba, two players from Juventus and Austrian international Marko Arnoutavic, who joined Stoke, were all on our radar at one stage or another but for varying reasons, none of them came.
“Stewart Downing, who had become available a little earlier, is an outstanding player who will be invaluable to us. I emphasise that because there has been some criticism out there that, instead of signing him, we should have signed a striker.”
And Allardyce is now calling for Hammers fans to move on from that disappointment ahead of what he believes is going to be a tough season.
“It’s time to move on, get Stewart back from injury, find the right rehabilitation for Andy and improve what we have available,” he added.
“I said before the transfer window closed that I would reserve judgement on this season’s Premier League campaign until September, when I had the chance to assess each club’s squad and their spending. My verdict is it will be tougher this season.”
Allardyce also looked back on his most memorable moments in the Boleyn Ground hot seat as his 100th game as Hammers manager edges closer.
“I have to admit it’s gone quickly and we’ve achieved a fair bit in those games so far,” he said.
“The doom and gloom moments during those games have been few and the only time I had a worry was when we were going for promotion and drew fives games on the trot.
“The highlights? The legged-play-off semi-final against Cardiff, because I don’t believe will you see any team so dominant over two matches, then the Play-off final. Last season it has to be our second-half against Chelsea, coming from 1-0 down to win 3-1.
“Down the line, we will have improved and be even more of a force to be reckoned with.”