West Ham United co-owner David Sullivan has earned the club a reputation of low-balling for players with very little success.
From the infamous William Carvalho saga to James Tarkowski, Wesley Fofana and Nikola Milenkovic to name but a few.
Sullivan appears to have made an art of going in so far under a player’s valuation it only serves to anger the would-be selling club.
That in turn not only makes negotiations more difficult, but usually prompts the would-be selling club to do business with other clubs.
All Hans on deck for Hammers?
Now it seems Sullivan – West Ham’s self-confessed head of recruitment – is at it again.
West Ham have been linked with a move for Club Brugge playmaker Hans Vanaken (Belgian media outlet HLN).
And HLN even claims Vanaken would jump at the chance to sign for West Ham.
But once again West Ham’s bid has been rejected according to The Sun.
Here we go again as Sullivan low-balls for club’s star player
Sullivan is said to have bid £14m for the star but Brugge rejected it out of hand and are demanding more for their best player.
Brugge have reportedly pointed out to Sullivan that Vanaken signed a new five-year contract just one year ago.
And he scored 17 goals and added three assists last season before the campaign was cut short and Brugge were crowned champions.
Some may have doubts over the validity of Vanaken’s ability given the inferior reputation of the Belgian league.
But he has proved he can mix it with the best by scoring against European giants Real Madrid in the Champions League.
Vanaken’s superb form has continued into this term with four goals and two assists in his opening seven matches this term.
Pay the price or… pay the price
West Ham have made their first new signing of the window with the capture of right-back Vladimir Coufal (whufc.com).
But David Moyes is still desperate to sign an attacking midfielder and a centre-back.
The clock is ticking with just three days until the window shuts.
Now is not the time to be low-balling clubs for their best players.
It begs the question does Sullivan ever do his homework on the valuations of players before bidding. Of course it is reasonable to protect the interests of your club by negotiating for the best possible deal.
But the going rate is the going rate.
You either pay it or you don’t get quality players.
Sullivan must start living in the real world or West Ham could end up paying a much more costly price.