This has been a good few weeks for players coming to West Ham, but not so good for one West Ham player that could be on his way out.
With the arrival of Ecuadorian power house Enner Valencia and Arsenal full back Carl Jenkinson, fans certainly have a lot to get excited about.
Valencia is big, strong, quick and fantastic in the air as we saw at the World Cup in Brazil so, with Andy Carroll out for four months, Valencia should be getting plenty of game time. Depending on what system Big Sam plays, I’d love to see Valencia playing up top with Zarate playing in behind him, feeding off any scraps – the stereotypical little and large partnership that works so well for other clubs.
Then there’s Carl Jenkinson. A highly-rated full-back from Arsenal with Premier league, Champions league and International experience. He is quick, going forward and back, not afraid to take his man on and has a good engine, never stops running. A very good signing and one of the West Ham fans will look forward to seeing in action.
All round it has been a very productive transfer window thus far. The two I’ve just mentioned, plus young starlet Diego Poyet, pacy left back Aaron Cresswell, midfield/defensive battler Cheikhou kouyate and striker Mauro Zarate are all, on paper at least, very good signings for the club.
This brings us to the one possible departure of Ravel Morrison. Much has happened to the young lad, both good and bad in his 21 years, but recent allegations about his behavior, and accusations of common assault against two females, point to an early exit from West Ham.
Big Sam has made it clear that Morrison was not part of his plans for the coming season and possibly the only reason he is still at the club could be the fact that David Sullivan has openly spoken of his admiration for Ravel, and that he should be given another chance at the club.
Well these accusations could change all that for the worse. It’s important that we keep an open mind until all the facts about this alleged assault have come to light and until then he must be seen as innocent until proven guilty. But the signs don’t look good for him as he has had previous bust ups before that led to Sir Alex Ferguson washing his hands of him and selling him.
We don’t know if these two females provoked him into a scuffle and made out they had been assaulted. If they know he has a short temper, he is easy pickings. Reacting to provocation from another male is understandable, but still not acceptable, but assaulting anyone from the opposite sex is clearly wrong and, if found guilty, he must be punished accordingly.
While you are employed by West Ham, or any other club for that matter, you are a representative of that club and therefore it is your responsibility to behave responsibly and set a good example at all times. Big Sam gave Ravel a second chance, and everybody deserves a second chance no matter who they are, but a third, fourth or fifth chance is way beyond the reach of the magical talent that is Ravel Morrison.
He will always be under constant scrutiny and it seems his young head cannot cope with the fame and adulation that comes from being a talented football star.
In recent articles I haven’t been able to praise him enough. I think he is a fantastic talent of the likes that don’t come along too often but this incident, I fear, will signal the end of Ravel Morrisons promising West Ham career.
If he leaves and manages to get his head in gear and becomes one of the best midfielders in the Premier league, then it’s a bad move to let him go, but I think, sadly, that this latest incident could see him spiral out of control and fade into obscurity, and that would be a shame for everyone.
Lastly I would like to comment on the growing gossip about the possible arrival of Samuel Eto’o at West Ham. While I think he is a class striker, and his record of 193 goals in 316 games since 2003 speaks for itself, I fear his ego and his wage demands would be far too big for West Ham. While it is nice to be linked with such a player, we have to be realistic and ask ourselves if the deal is worth it or not.
Could we sell enough shirts with his name on to make it fanatically viable to take a gamble on him? Will Valencia, Carroll, Zarate & Cole score so few goals that we will need him? I doubt it.
But this window has already thrown up a few surprises, so who I am to guess? I still expect Maiga to leave, possibly back to France and maybe Vaz Te and Diame too, but only time will tell.
Either way I’ll be confident of a good result against Spurs on the opening day despite results in pre-season. Just remember, we won every game pre-season under Avram Grant and look how that turned out…