Following his £20.2m move from West Ham, Sebastien Haller will prove his worth for Ajax in the Eredivisie
After becoming our club-record signing in the summer of 2019, Haller arrived at West Ham enriching fans with hope that he could be their next star player. The ‘striker curse’ has plagued West Ham for the past decade, but unfortunately Haller was not the man to break it.
The Ivorian striker arrives in the Netherlands for less than half the price West Ham signed him for. The 26-year-old scored 14 goals in 53 appearances, including a stunning overhead kick against Crystal Palace last month.
Since becoming first-choice striker at West Ham, following Michael Antonio’s injury, Haller has struggled to impress. Despite being our top scorer with seven goals this season, he has only scored three Premier League goals in 16 games. Although often criticised for his lack of work rate, Haller was not suited to David Moyes’ system and was never going to be unless the formation changed.
Nevertheless, Haller may be missing his scoring boots but that doesn’t suggest he is no longer the player he once was. A lot of our play requires fast forwards that will run after the ball, but this contradicts Haller’s style of play.
Instead of being isolated up top, he needs people supporting him and making runs in behind so that he can get more chances closer to the goal. At Frankfurt he had the support of Luka Jovic, and ended up with 52 goal contributions in 77 games.
While this move may be what he and the club needed, Ajax will be rubbing their hands together at the idea that he can provide something special in the Eredivisie. Many will be quick to judge his abilities from his time at West Ham, but it is more likely that the Ivorian will prove his doubters wrong at his new club.
— Sébastien Haller (@HallerSeb) January 8, 2021
Ajax will offer him more reinforcement going forward, with the attacking flairs of Dusan Tadic, Antony Santos and Quincy Promes behind him. With more support comes more chances, and for a man of Haller’s stature – he will thrive off the support he’ll receive.
Not to mention he has previously played in the Eredivisie before. He signed for FC Utrecht in 2015, before moving to Germany with Eintracht Frankfurt two years later. Arguably it is a much easier league to play in, but scoring 51 goals in 98 games for the Dutch side proves that he can succeed in this league.
While West Ham may not have been the club for Haller, it is unfair to judge his quality as a footballer on his time spent in England. If you play him in the right system with the right players around him, you can guarantee that he will score goals.