talkSPORT is reporting that West Ham are interested in signing Mario Mandzukic from Juventus. The Board continues to look for new strikers, and have obviously not been put off by the last man we brought in from Juventus. The 30-year old Mandzukic has been known for scoring in bunches for Juventus and before that in Spain and Germany, but has fallen off this season.
This type of move kind of smells like signing a striker (and a name) just to sign a striker and a name. While it may improve the squad on a short-term basis, it isn’t the type of signing that inspires boat-loads of confidence and ambition. Past his prime, and untested in the Premier League, Super Mario could have an impact for the team, providing experience and a potential reinforcement for Andy Carroll. But does this help the side long-term or is it just another attempt to solve the ever-hilarious rotating cast of characters to be the ying to Carroll’s yang?
Two things to see here, which have a varying impact on the move. The first is that Slaven Bilic has managed Mandzukic with the Croatia national side. This would mean another signing being brought in from one of Slaven’s previous jobs, which haven’t produced the best results (see Töre, Gokhan). The second is what this would mean for the younger strikers at the club. As we have seen this season, the manager has favored age and experience up top, leaving the likes of Ashley Fletcher on the bench, while sending out Toni Martinez (a personal favorite) on loan. While this rumor may not have any truth behind it, it is important to understand that this is becoming a trend for West Ham, being linked with any able-bodied striker with a pulse as the key to solving our goal scoring woes.