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West Ham United

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West Ham finally confirm double exit as Pablo Fornals shares heartfelt message after Real Betis transfer

Said Benrahma and Pablo Fornals celebrating for West Ham

Said Benrahma and Pablo Fornals have both officially left West Ham

Pablo Fornals and Said Benrahma have both completed their deadline-beating departures from West Ham United to Real Betis and Lyon respectively.

Fornals and Benrahma were both hoping to secure moves away from West Ham on deadline day, but their moves had not been processed by the cut-off point, putting them in limbo.

Lyon in particular were furious about the risk of Benrahma slipping from their grasp, while it was a computer issue to blame on the Fornals front, but things have been resolved in both cases.

West Ham have confirmed on Friday evening that Fornals has completed his permanent transfer to Real Betis and Benrahma has completed his loan move (with an option to buy) to Lyon.

Fornals has been announced by Real Betis, where he has signed a contract until 2029. The transfer fee for the 27-year-old is undisclosed, but TEAMtalk learned it was in the region of €8m, which has been backed up by other sources.

It marks a return to LaLiga for the Spain international, who previously played for Malaga and Villarreal.

Meanwhile, Algeria international Benrahma is back in Ligue 1 after previously developing in the Nice system and also playing for Angers.

Lyon have confirmed they have paid £5.1m to have the 28-year-old until the end of the season and could pay a further £12.3m to make him a permanent member of their squad in the summer.

Pablo Fornals bids West Ham farewell

After the announcement of his move to Real Betis, a message from Fornals was published on the West Ham website.

It read: “Hello everyone,

“So, West Ham fans, I am here one more time at London Stadium and hopefully not the last one.

“I just want to thank you for these four seasons and a half and for the support and the good memories.

“I arrived as a kid and became a man here and it was such a great pleasure for me to fight from relegation in my first season to become sixth in the league, to play a semi-final of European football with you the next season and to win a trophy.

“I have such big memories.

“You’re always going to be in my heart.

“This stadium, this team and this crowd will be with me always.

“I think you are waiting for this…

“West Ham are massive, everywhere we go!”

Fornals played 203 times for West Ham in total, scoring 23 goals.

Meanwhile, Benrahma played 155 times for West Ham and scored 24 goals after his arrival from Brentford in 2020.

Both of them played in the Europa Conference League final last season, with Fornals coming on as a substitute for opening goalscorer Benrahma as the Hammers beat Fiorentina 2-1.

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