David Moyes will be hugely disappointed after discovering striker Elye Wahi will not be moving to West Ham United, as Fabrizio Romano has given a different move his ‘here we go’ stamp of approval.
West Ham raised eyebrows when they hijacked Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea’s moves for Wahi. The France U21 international impressed at Montpellier last term, bagging 19 goals in 33 games.
Tottenham and Chelsea had both identified Wahi as a potential solution to their respective striker problems. However, it was their London rivals West Ham who swooped in and took concrete steps towards landing the Ligue 1 ace.
On Wednesday, it emerged that Wahi had given a transfer to West Ham the green light. It was therefore down to the Irons to finalise a deal with Montpellier.
On Friday, French source RMC Sport claimed West Ham to be on the cusp of reaching an agreement for the 20-year-old’s move. A deal was expected to cost between €35-40m (£29.8-34.1m).
However, Moyes and West Ham have ultimately missed out on the deal. Writing on Twitter, Romano has revealed that Wahi is poised to join Montpellier’s French rivals Lens instead.
Romano has claimed it is ‘here we go’ for Wahi to join Lens as they have reached an agreement worth €35m for his signing.
Wahi has sorted out personal terms too, as he is ready to pen a five-year contract with Lens. His medical has been booked for later today (Saturday).
Elye Wahi snubs West Ham for Lens switch
Romano adds that ‘several clubs’ were also hoping to capture Wahi, which certainly includes West Ham. The Italian journalist goes on to provide the main reason why Wahi has rejected other teams in order to sign for Lens.
They finished second in the French top flight last season, which means they will compete in the Champions League this term. As a result, Wahi will get the chance to test himself against some of the best defenders in the world. He will also aim to put himself in the shop window for the truly elite clubs in Europe.
Of course, West Ham can offer Wahi the opportunity to play in the Europa League after they triumphed in the Europa Conference League earlier this year. Although, it is well known that the Europa League does not quite have the same appeal as the Champions League.
West Ham were hoping to make Wahi their replacement for Gianluca Scamacca, following the Italian’s move back to Serie A with Atalanta.
West Ham have signed two players so far this summer, with Edson Alvarez and James Ward-Prowse joining to help offset the loss of skipper Declan Rice.