In last week’s article we talked about such woeful forwards as Modibo Maiga and Marouane Chamakh, but who will make our list this week as we delve deeper into the realms of David Gold and David Sullivan’s dreadful striker signings?
After finishing the summer 2013 transfer window with an insufficient number of strikers, then manager Sam Allardyce turned to the panic purchase of free-agent Mladen Petric. However, the former Fulham man would go onto one of the shortest-term West Ham United players in history.
The Croat signed a one-year deal in September 2013, amid vast pessimism from the Hammers faithful. He made his debut in the dramatic 3-2 loss to Everton as a 63rd-minute substitute for fellow flop Modibo Maiga. Petric had quickly and expectedly become a fringe figure to Big Sam’s starting 11 and made another goalless cameo in the 3-2 League Cup win over Cardiff City. The October re-signing of Carlton Cole would turn out to make his position on the bench more permanent and only two more appearances in Claret and Blue against Hull City and Manchester City would follow.
In December of that year, the former Borussia Dortmund man’s contract was terminated and he made a move to Greece. Mladen Petric remains one of the forgotten figures of recent times and is barely remembered by many Hammers fans.
Italian forward Marco Borriello was signed for the same reasons as his compatriot Petric, as we fought our way to safety from relegation during the 2013/2014 season. Despite faring slightly better than the former Croatian international, Borriello’s time in The Premier League would prove to be career damagingly bad.
The loan move for the former Italy international cost Gold and Sullivan around £700,000 and was completed in January 2014. The then 32-year-old had been loaned out by Serie A side Roma, after a disappointing first half of the season. Borriello would go onto struggle with a calf-strain that plagued his time at Upton Park and ruin his chance of making a name for himself in England. The former Juventus man’s first and only two appearances in Claret and Blue would come in the Premier League wins over Aston Villa at Villa Park and Norwich City at home, both by the margin of 2-0 and both goalless cameos for Borriello.
The physical forward’s time at West Ham United would be ended by a calf-strain that kept him out until the end of the 2013/2014 season. Just like Mladen Petric, Marco Borriello remains another Gold and Sullivan signing that has already been forgotten by a generation of Hammers that have been treated to some dreadful signings.