Former West Ham manager Alan Pardew made an appearance on Sky Sports’ Goals on Sunday yesterday, where he discussed his management of the Hammers.
Pardew enjoyed a successful spell with West Ham between 2003 and 2006, where he led the Hammers to promotion to the Premier League and signed the likes of Carlos Tevez and Javier Mascherano.
However, when quizzed as to who his favourite signing for West Ham was, Pardew named Dean Ashton as his favourite- comparing him to current Tottenham Hotspur striker Harry Kane.
“I’ve had some fantastic players and great pros, but Dean Ashton just really fills me with such regret…When we signed him I didn’t think he was as good as he was…He could do everything.”
“When you compare him to Harry Kane, he was as quick as Harry Kane, left foot, right foot, but he was better in the air than Harry Kane – and I think England, possibly, with the midfield we had with Stevie [Steven] Gerrard and Frankie [Frank] Lampard, he [Ashton] could have won us something.”
“All the ingredients were there and that horrible injury suffered with England, at he height of his powers, took away a fantastic career.”
Signed in 2006 for £7.25m from Norwich City, the then 22-year-old striker became a favourite at the Boelyn Ground and scored in the Hammers FA Cup final defeat to Liverpool.
Unfortunately, Ashton badly broke his ankle on international duty that summer and was never the same again- retiring in 2009 at the age of just 26.