West Ham United look like they will be busy in the January transfer window and an expected departure could hold the key to a quality signing.
Manuel Pellegrini has been linked with more than 30 players already – see the full list here.
A number of West Ham players have also been linked with moves away.
Javier Hernandez, Pedro Obiang, Angelo Ogbonna, Andy Carroll and Lucas Perez have all been the subject of reported interest from elsewhere.
But it is the overtures of La Liga side Real Betis which could play into Pellegrini’s hands best.
Perez could hold key to Almiron
The Daily Mail claims Betis are keen on the former Arsenal striker who has failed to establish himself at West Ham following a £4.5 million summer move.
Clearly keen to invest, Betis have also been linked with Hammers target and MLS star Miguel Almiron (Football Espana).
The Paraguayan was voted the second best player in MLS and helped his side to a historic first title in the season just gone.
West Ham could offload Perez to Betis on the proviso they get a first option on Almiron.
The Hammers would be expected to win a straight shootout with the La Liga club anyway.
Exciting young playmaker fits new West Ham profile
The lure of playing in London for a progressive side under a fellow South American as manager and alongside an international teammate in the shape of Fabian Balbuena would weigh heavily in West Ham’s favour.
Betis are in need of a striker as they push for the European spots in La Liga.
As a result they would welcome a gentleman’s agreement with the Hammers that would see them given a free run at Perez.
West Ham have been linked with Gabriel Barbosa from Inter Milan which would only limit Perez’s game time further.
At 24, exciting playmaker Almiron is exactly the profile of player West Ham fans want to see the club invest in.
Pellegrini’s smartest move yet?
Since appointing Pellegrini and director of football Mario Husillos West Ham have made a number of shrewd signings.
Felipe Anderson, Issa Diop, Lukasz Fabianski, Balbuena have all been successes. Andriy Yarmolenko also looked a fine acquisition before his season-ending injury.
Samir Nasri too – on the evidence of his classy debut last time out – looks another smart move.
Almiron could yet be the smartest of the lot.