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Moyes winter signings over the last 15 years

Moyes on a scouting mission at Chelsea last season

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:

09/10 season

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



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About Hugh5outhon1895

Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!" Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon

20 comments on “Moyes winter signings over the last 15 years

  1. When you look at our record, other than Demba Ba, Vaz Te and Snodgrass, perhaps Joao Mario it’s hard to see any reason for optimism from manager or chairman is it ?

    • At best, a 9/32 return. Our Board do not know football. They have a below average knowledge of the game and have a knee jerk reaction to problems…..problems they create by their lack of knowledge. I actually respect Sully and Gold as West Ham fans who dug us out of a hole. They and Ms Brady do not have the ability to take us away from the hole. They have completely failed to create a base where they cannot appoint (any) manager to follow their strategy and style of football to take us to a permanent top 6-8 league position our revenue demands. Get a decent CEO, a management team to support them and let Sully and Gold to bt non exec chairperson to simply ensure the management team are looking after their investment.

      • I’m not sure that nine years out of 10 in the PL – making us one of the most successful 20 clubs in England – finishing essentially between 7th and 13th shows a lack of knowledge. Depends what you’re looking for and how u define success at a club like ours I guess

      • Hey Martin great post, this is spot on.
        My sentiments exactly, I’m thankful for what they have done in regards to saving us from possible extinction and stabilised is, but we need someone who can move us forward with a clear strategy for continued growth and success. Even Moyes said this with Red Bulls various clubs and what they are a achieving

      • Martin, I follow a few clubs around Europe because I have lived in a few places. Those clubs that have a proper Director of Football and a good scouting department do better, and have (at all times) a couple of possible players under observation for every position on the pitch in case somebody leaves. They also have a couple of coaches in their list just in case someone is needed at short notice.
        The clubs that rely on their owners or coach to buy/sell players tend to have a weaker grasp of who is available, and tend to choose players they haven’t observed for a year or two. You have to watch players for a long time when they are young so that you buy rough diamonds. You can’t do that without a really good scouting department.
        That is one of the reasons why some clubs do well and others are mediocre.

    • I would also add Jose Fonte and Gary O’neill. Fonte blew hot nd cold but could be very good at times. Gary O’Neill was not too gifted but was a fighter and he scored a couple of spectacular goals for West Ham. He came back after a scandalous aggression (I don’t remember who the butcher was) and most had claimed his career was over. With hard work and determination he still served our club, for which he deserves recognition.

      That said, some of our signings were truly appalling (Mido, Pokertyts, Mc Carthy, George John), others could not be valued because they did not receive a true chance to show their worth (Nene, Nocerino, Borriello) and others were more a problem the a solution (Keane, Nasri, Bridge, Chamakh, Morrison).

  2. I have been very critical at the lack of action in this window,but let’s just look at the total spend over 10 years in January.Its small change.We consistently buy cheap uninspiring players and reap the fallout.You are looking at 20 mill a piece for say Gabigol Bowen or Berge so historically it just ain’t gonna happen is it.?

    • It’s no more or less than most others outside the top 6 but maybe you’d like to research that so you are sure. There’s no general perspective taken by some on this forum and rarely any links to support the views. Just feelings.

  3. Everton were skint almost all the time he was there

    So he’ll be used to our owners non stop pleas of poverty

  4. Fascinating reading, congrats & thanks, Hugh.

    Does anyone know if we can recall Hugill from QPR? We could use a bit of competition up front.

  5. If there has ever been an article to sober the drunken, befuddled thinking of Transfer Window time, this is it! Thanks Hugh.

    There have been some pretty poor signing in 10 years of January windows, but the permanent signings look poor value compared to the loaners, who were at least sent packing in June

  6. Hugh add up the cost of the spine of our team fab, Cresswell or mas, ogbonna, bal or Diop, zaba or Frederick, noble and rice and then tell us this is worthy of a Premiership team, let alone a team promised Europe.

    • It depends to what extent you equate fees with ability – Payet was £10 million. You would probably be as well applying the same argument to 14 other clubs. The ‘spine is usually seen as Goalkeeper (£7 million – bargain), Central defender ) Diop £22 million) striker Haller £50m. I think the inclusion of Noble is unfair given he was home grown and near the end – I agree he needs to be replaced – but I don’t think Rive would go for less than £50 million. I also think that you may have forgotten to include Anderson at £35 million. This argument goes on forever Jules. {ersonally I believe our sufferings are as a result of Pellegrini.

      • I understand we have spent money on two players and a LOT of failed attackers. I think it’s over 300 mil in five years, but when you add up the value of the starting 11 on most match days it is nowhere near this amount. The whole squad adds up to about 200 mil. This is where the problem is, a short fall of 100 mil and this together with the player who were bought before five years or were free. It shows a server miss management and why people are saying it is a poorly run club.

        • It seems to me that the Moyes scenario as outlined here is regularly ignored, maybe because it’s an inconvenient truth Jules.As far as the club is concerned I’ds suggest that to be in the top league in the world nine seasons out of team is a reasonable achievement. Not top six but not at all bad and kinds defies your stats argument given we have been between seventh and 13th by and large

          • I have no problem with the owners it is their club they have earned the money to be able to buy our team but, please don’t pee on us and tell us its raining…. I’m not one to cause trouble at the ground on go to protest. Their used to be eight of us with season tickets and for 20years we went religiously, then as our kids got older they got season tickets and that number grew. Sadly none of us have season tickets now and most don’t even watch them on TV. I would say that speaks for a lot of fans and reflects how people feel about the current situation. Nothing stays the same. I’m sure if we was to invest in scouts, modern trading grounds and a director of football we couldn’t blame anyone for our current position. Instead it seems like a very rich man playing football manager and earning money out of a club many working men looked forward to being part of.

          • If you include the first season they took over, when they didn’t have a full season, & include the current position for this season the avaerage position is 13th. According to my maths. If you include only full seasons the average is 12th.

  7. In this article, there are a lot of misleading and wrong statements about Moyes at Everton:

    ‘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’ – That was never the case, only two times he was afforded transfer money in the winter – when we signed Beattie, as Rooney was sold and the line was led by Marcus Bent and when he signed Jelavic.
    You are also claiming that only two of his signings were “outright successes” – again highly inaccurate. Fernandes was magnificent in his first spell and we couldn’t afford to buy him outright. Jelavic was magnificent under Moyes and was sold on profit, Gibson was bought for 500k and for this kind of money unmitigated success, Dan Gosling ditto.

    I am not Moyes advocate but give him time or rather he should earn it and in 3-4 years you will have a marvelous squad. He isn’t a quick fix and he is pragmatic depending on his personnel but he can deliver some quality football given time, even not resources.

    He was sacked by United but I can bet my house that they would have been in a better spot with him now rather when they are at the moment. With negative net or close to zero we finished above Liverpool in his last two seasons, since he left Everton squandered more than 500m and were twice in relegation troubles as early as November/December. Be patient and you will reap the rewards.

    Cheers and good luck for the rest of the season.

  8. Very poor record. However, the inability of manager after manager to coach professional athletes to play as a team is the real problem. I reckon if we had Mane, Salah and Firmino in our squad, we’d still struggle. Klopp would have made a decent player out of some of the rubbish we’ve signed.

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