James Collins has rejoined the Irons but talks with Andy Carroll are ongoing
West Ham have been in the unique position this summer of having signed quite a few players without their squad appearing noticeably stronger than it was at the close of the previous campaign.
The primary reason has been that the early action consisted of completing permanent transfers for guys who were already there (Stephen Henderson and George McCartney) or replacing those who left the club (Jussi Jaaskelainen in for Robert Green and Mohamed Diame for Papa Bouba Diop).
Recent moves have shown more ambition and a far greater level of investment though as first Sochaux forward Modibo Maiga for a reported £5 million and then this week James Collins returned from Aston Villa for £2.5 million.
The Wales international’s three-year stint at Villa Park ended fairly miserably, however there is cause to suspect that he is the Irons’ most important of the window to date, addressing defensive concerns.
The slightly surprising decision to release veteran Abdoulaye Faye left Sam Allardyce with only two senior centre backs, Winston Reid and James Tomkins.
Neither are fully proven in the Premier League and Tomkin may miss the start due to the Olympics, so it was rather alarming that almost all transfer news surrounded strikers, making the arrival of a defender not only with plenty of experience but a soft spot for West Ham an ideal addition.
There are hopes that the next newcomer will be even more glamorous, having agreed a loan deal and future fee with Liverpool for unwanted £35 million man Andy Carroll, but he isn’t quite as sold on the virtues of east London.
Regardless, the ex-Newcastle star is 8/13 to join a side rated 9/4 to tumble straight back into the Championship.