January is reputedly the hardest window in which any football club can do proper business.
Of course there are cries from the terraces that reinforcements are needed and that money must be spent, particularly when things aren’t going according to plan.
For West Ham this month, that seems to be the case.
It also seems to be the case that wherever David Moyes has worked he invariably keeps his powder dry in the depth of winter!
ClaretandHugh has found that the new manager has made – in total – 14 squad additions in 15 years
At Everton, he brought in more than one player in the winter window since 2005 just twice; in 2008, when Manuel Fernandes, Dan Gosling and Seamus Coleman arrived; and in 2012, when Darron Gibson and Nikica Jelavic were signed.
The other signings are something of a rogue’s gallery – striker Apostolos Velios, for example, played for the club just 24 times, scoring three goals – while Fernandes was actually signed on loan twice.
Just two can be considered outright successes – John Stones and Coleman, the latter having been signed for just £63,000 in 2008. James Beattie, the most expensive acquisition at the club at a price of £8.1m, was a massive flop, scoring just 15 times in 85 appearances.
But accusations that he is something of a ditherer appear to have some credence.
His initial spell with the Hammers, as we well know, led to the signings of Jordan Hugill and Joao Mario on loan. Say no more!
At Sunderland, he signed Darron Gibson – he played 30 games and won seven of them; two were against Bury and Carlisle United in the EFL Cup – and Bryan Oviedo, a player who sank into League One with the Black Cats.
His other January buy? Juan Mata at Manchester United. That, perhaps, can be considered a success given his longevity at the club – he came on as a substitute against Liverpool on Sunday under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer – but he also cost £40m; one has to expect a return on that investment.
Put simply, this is a manager who, even when given the opportunity, as one has to imagine he was regularly afforded at Everton, routinely appears to shun the winter window.
He is not one to strengthen his squad in January and when he does dip his toe in the water, he has had far more misses than hits.
It remains to be seen what the rest of this month holds.
At the same time we checked out the business conducted by the Irons over the 10 years of Gold and Sullivan’s ownership at the club. Here’s what it shows:
Ilan – Free transfer from Saint-Etienne
Benni McCarthy – £2.3m from Blackburn Rovers
Mido – Loan from Middlesbrough
Paul McCallum – £68k from Dulwich Hamlet (now with Solihull Moors, never played for West Ham)
Wayne Bridge – Loan from Manchester City
Demba Ba – £720k from Hoffenheim
Robbie Keane – Loan from Spurs
Gary O’Neill – £2.6m from Middlesbrough
George John – Loan from FC Dallas
Danny Collins – Loan from Stoke
Stephen Henderson – Loan from Portsmouth
Ricardo Vaz Te – £540k from Barnsley
Ravel Morrison – £700k from Manchester United
Nicky Maynard – £1.8m from Bristol City
Wellington Paulista – Loan from Cruzeiro
Joe Cole – Free transfer from Liverpool
Marouane Chamakh – Loan from Arsenal
Emmanuel Pogatetz – Loan from Wolfsburg
Pablo Armero – Loan from Napoli
Antonio Nocerino – Loan from AC Milan
Jaanai Gordon – No fee given from Peterborough
Abdul Razak – Free transfer from Anzhi
Roger Johnson – Loan from Wolves
Marco Borriello – Loan from Roma
Nene – Free transfer
Doneil Henry – £1.7m from Apollon Limassol
Emmanuel Emenike – Loan from Fenerbahce
Sam Byram – £4.3m from Leeds United
Jose Fonte – £8.2m from Southampton
Robert Snodgrass – £10.8m from Hull City
Joao Mario – Loan from Inter Milan
Jordan Hugill – £9.1m from Preston North End
Samir Nasri – Free transfer
Darren Randolph – £4.3m from Middlesbrough
TOTAL – 34 signings
SPENT – £47.1m
LOANS/FREES – 21
PERMANENTS – 13