Many West Ham United fans were furious when young star Grady Diangana was sold to West Bromwich Albion in the summer.
But have West Ham actually played a blinder in getting nearly £20million for the winger?
For the moment at least, it very much seems that way.
Familiar question marks have emerged over Diangana’s ability to deliver consistently at the top level with West Brom.
They are the same doubts which were raised when Diangana’s meteoric rise to the West Ham first team under Manuel Pellegrini went flat.
Grady failing to make the grade?
It comes as the West Ham academy product was substituted on 64 minutes in West Brom’s 1-1 draw with Brighton on Monday.
Of course it is still early in the season. And there are mitigating circumstances in that West Brom are a struggling side.
In an ideal world West Ham would have kept Diagana. But had he stayed, it is highly unlikely he would be getting in the side.
Diangana may have shone in the Championship for the Baggies after being shipped out on loan by West Ham.
But he is failing to spark let alone set the world alight in the Prem with West Brom, who are one of the favourites to be relegated.
It is a similar story to Diangana’s time with West Ham in the top flight. The skilful star broke into the side under Pellegrini and excited fans with his potential.
But he faded fast and struggled to make an impact, hence his loan the following campaign.
Former Hammer struggling to replicate Championship form
Of course West Ham fans will take no pleasure seeing Diangana struggle. He was ineffective against Brighton and withdrawn with West Brom 1-0 down. They went on to salvage a point.
Since his wonderful strike against Everton in West Brom’s opening day defeat, Diangana has not scored or assisted.
Against Burnley last week, Diangana won just 41% of a whopping 22 duels, lost possession 17 times, committed three fouls and could only muster up one shot, one key pass and one dribble all game (SofaScore).
BirminghamLive gave Diangana a 6/10 and said: “He was frustrated and blunted by Erik Pieters, who himself was playing out of position and ought to have been exploited more.”
West Brom fan sites and bloggers have also been airing their disappointment at Diangana’s inability – so far – to convert his Championship form onto the Premier League stage.
West Ham cannot claim it was some masterstroke to take the money and run when it comes to Diangana.
More luck than judgement from West Ham?
The club admitted itself the decision was made ‘reluctantly’ to fund improvements to the squad (whufc.com).
Moves for some quality defenders failed, though. And whether by design or not, West Ham have ended up with Said Benrahma instead.
West Ham’s new attacker has 57 goal involvements – 30 goals and 27 assists – in 94 games over the last two years.
Like Diangana he is unproven in the Premier League. But West Ham fans are genuinely excited about what he can bring to their side.
But give it a couple of months and it is unlikely West Ham fans would swap the Algerian to have Diangana back.
Grady may come good at West Brom. But as things stand West Ham look to have played a blinder by getting a big fee.