We’re six games into the season and the anger over our 0-3 start has subsided a bit. We’ve had a chance to see what our transfers have done for the team and the Brace the Hammer writers take a look at how the window grades out so far.
Window grade: B
Just on intent alone, and handling their business without a rush to what Everton was doing but still being urgent, it was as a good mid-stage portion of the transfer window for West Ham as possible, where my and many other people's grade before the start of the season was an A. They got Pablo Zabaleta on a free early, then in a magical week secured Joe Hart, Javier Hernandez and new club record signing Marko Arnautovic. Even if there was a need for one destroying holding midfielder, the fan base was in full rapture and positivity reigned throughout the club. The loss of Sofiane Feghouli and eventually Robert Snodgrass, along with the likes of Ashley Fletcher, Havard Nordtveit, Gokhan Tore and Jonathan Calleri, were at least filled enough with quality it appeared. The signings lead even Jose Mourinho, whether to make West Ham feel too overconfident or nervous before the opener at Manchester United, opined that West Ham could be a darkhorse for the Premier League crown. Now that the Hammers are at the other end of contending for a title after three games, and the inability to get that defensive midfielder of Carvalho, Danilo or another, leads to the grade going down a level from how excellent it was in early August.
Window grade: B
I think the signings they made were important to strengthen the side and we potentially got our 20-goal-a-year striker. The issue now is getting Hernandez support so he's not as isolated as he has been. That could have (and should have) been addressed later in the window. But we should be in good shape for the season once healthy and I would have given his a solid B, but the latest circus brings it down.
Window grade: B-
By any rational measures, West Ham had a successful transfer window. They addressed key issues in the striker and right back positions with talented, cheap, experienced options.
They also brought in a talented young player (Sead Haksabanovic) and signed Joe Hart, a player who should bring a higher class to the goalkeeping position.
To cap things off, Wet Ham signed Stoke's best player, the wildly talented (if temperamental) Marko Arnautovic.
And yet, for some reason, the window feels like a disappointment. Maybe it's all the rejected deals. Maybe it's the embarrassing battle between our board and Sporting Lisbon. Perhaps it comes down to the fact that other teams have improved even more than we have.
Whatever the problem, it's hard to shake the feeling that this transfer window will somehow be a letdown.
Window grade: C
The team addressed the long-term right back issue by buying 98 year old Pablo Zabaleta, got a keeper the team didn't really need, and sold off a bunch of players. Chicharito was an inspired choice at striker, but it feels like that was luck rather than strategy. Arnie is a good player, but holes were needlessly created and the William Carvalho transfer debacle proves just how much the board is out of their depth in dealing with transfer issues.
Window grade: B-
The signings the club made this season were solid signings. Chicharito will score lots of goals this year and is the first poacher West Ham have had in a long time. Arnautovic is a good player as well despite losing his cool, and Zabaleta is a defensive minded right back which is another thing we haven’t had in a while. But Zabaleta does lack pace which can be an issue, and without any additions to our center backs, we may find ourselves giving up lots of goals again as Fonte and Ogbonna look quite out of place. But the window for me still fixed more holes than they created. We just need to show it now.
Window grade: C
The only thing that saves this from being less is the signing of Chicharito. He’s been fantastic since joining the Hammers this summer. The jury is still out on the rest but it doesn’t look great. I thought Joe Hart was a horrible signing from the very begining and he hasn’t done anything to make me think otherwise. Adrian could do just as good as a job as Hart and for half the price.
Marko Arnautovic I was lukewarm on at the beginning. I thought his attitude could be an issue (it has been), I thought he was streaky (he has been), and I thought we overpaid for him (we did). So far he’s had one good game and the rest have been an unmitigated disaster (Southampton red card), and nothing impressive otherwise. He has a long way to go to live up to his price tag.
Pablo Zabaleta has been good for this team and I like that signing a lot. Sead Haba looks promising but I would have liked to sign at least another player or two that was a promising talent.
I’m still furious that we didn’t get Iheanacho and upset but not furious over the William Carvalho deal. We had the money but couldn’t get either deal done for various reasons depending on who you believe. I think a C is appropriate as it has been a very average window.
What grade do you give the transfer window? Leave us a comment.