Samir Nasri looks set to join West Ham after his UEFA ban will stop at the end of the year. But is this a step in the right direction for the Hammers?
Nasri lit up the Premier League with stints at Arsenal and Manchester City but this was almost a decade ago and now he is 31. For sure the French international still has quality in him, and could play at a good level for at least the next three seasons. But quite clearly he hasn’t been at his best for a good 3 years and this led City to loan him out to La Liga side Sevilla.
The imminent signing for West Ham does make some sense but ultimately feels hollow at the same time. What does come to mind is that Nasri has worked with West Ham manager Manuel Pellegrini before at City, and they enjoyed success together. It is obvious that Nasri has time for him and this means that West Ham will be getting a player that will fight for the club and play good football- the question is when will that honeymoon end?
West Ham have been in this situation countless times before, where they have signed really good players past their prime. These players have mostly given out a great debut month only to fade after the rigours of what the Premier League does to a player who is not 100% committed. The only real flair player that worked at the club was Paolo Di Canio and even though he left the Hammers as a club legend he still encountered some criticism and lack of form.
What West Ham need are younger players in the mould of a Nasri, not players that have seen their best days. Nasri is also asking for a reported £100,000 a week, but with his age together with him being out of football for almost a year he should be going in lighter than that.
With long term injuries to the likes of Andriy Yarmolenko and Jack Wilshire it seems that West Ham are going to take the risk on Nasri. And on the face of it it’s hard not to blame them and yet with a new stadium, cash injection on players and Manuel Pellegrini at the helm it does feel that this signing warrants a step backwards for a club who would have made the same choices back in the 1990s, where they diced with and did get relegated on several occasions.