West Ham United have been linked with a host of players since the transfer window opened.
As is always the case with transfer speculation some will be smoke and mirrors, some will be no smoke without fire.
But one thing is for certain when it comes to West Ham. There is always plenty of smoke.
Manuel Pellegrini has been linked with players in just about every position of late.
Fantastic five Hammers targets shine on international stage
And a number of his reported targets were in action in the latest round of internationals.
Prime striker target Maxi Gomez (Evening Standard) scored in Uruguay’s 3-0 Copa America warm-up win over Panama. Gomez opened the scoring after 19 minutes as he started up front alongside Barcelona’s Luis Suarez, who also scored.
Gomez’s Celta Vigo teammate Stanislav Lobotka has been linked with West Ham in a £60m double deal (Gianluca Di Marzio).
That move hangs in the balance over differing opinion of the player’s valuation.
Double deal duo on the scoresheet
But Lobotka showed his class when he opened the scoring with a superb individual goal for Slovakia in their 5-1 rout of Azerbaijan in Euro 2020 qualifying.
Aleksandar Mitrovic, said to be another top target for West Ham, grabbed a brace to help Serbia beat Lithuaina 4-1. That brought his international record to a very respectable 25 goals in just 49 games.
Roma striker Edin Dzeko has also been heavily linked with West Ham (Sky Sports). And he continued his remarkable goalscoring record for club and country opening the scoring for Bosnia against Italy in a 2-1 defeat.
Pellegrini given plenty to think about
That was Dzeko’s 56th goal for Bosnia in 103 games. That is to add to his near 300 goals in just over 600 career club games.
And Greece star Kostas Fortounis, who has been linked with a £15m move to West Ham (Daily Star), scored a late goal in a 3-2 defeat to Armenia. Fortounis had a mixed game after giving the ball away sloppily allowing Armenia to score.
And it was a mixed few days for another Hammers target Hasan Ali Kaldirim (BBC Sport). After earning high praise for his shackling of Kylian Mbappe in an historic win over France, the Turkey left-back started in a 2-1 defeat to international minnows Iceland.