West Ham United sealed the impressive signing of Sebastien Haller this week, but it seems rivals Tottenham Hotspur wanted him too.
West Ham made Haller their club record buy for £45million (BBC Sport).
It brought an end to a protracted hunt for a top quality striker which has spanned several years and many more transfer windows.
Ambitious West Ham outspending frugal Tottenham in a bid to play catch-up
West Ham have finally been committing big money to improving their squad over the last year.
Tottenham on the other hand have been more frugal. That was until they completed their own record signing of Tanguy Ndombele this summer.
While West Ham have been desperate for a marquee forward, Tottenham of course already had the marvellous Harry Kane.
Many feel Tottenham could and probably should have gone closer to winning a title in recent seasons.
And the finger is often pointed at not having another out-and-out striker as back-up for Kane.
Who would sign as back-up to Kane?
Heung-min Son often deputises admirably. But Spurs fans argue it is difficult to sign a quality striker who is happy to sit on the bench behind Kane.
West Ham finally have their man in 6ft 3in Haller, who has been starring in the Bundesliga and Europa League.
But it appears Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino wanted him too not so long ago.
After he left Germany for the Premier League this week, football website Get German Football News published a feature on his time there.
And in it journalist Kaustubh Pandey claims the Hammers have sealed quite a coup given Tottenham’s interest in the Frenchman.
Report claims Spurs wanted West Ham’s record man Haller
“A move for Celta Vigo star Maxi Gomez almost materialised until Valencia snatched him away,” GGFN reports.
“That made many West Ham fans worry as to who will be their chief goal-getter next season. But in Haller, they have much more than that. They have signed a player who could well go onto be a cult hero for them.
“It would be fair to say that the Frenchman has been one of the most underrated strikers in Europe in recent times. Perhaps, there is a reason why Mauricio Pochettino wanted him as a second-choice to his talisman Harry Kane not long ago. While that was during Haller’s days in the Netherlands with Utrecht, he has now become a player who can easily play for any top club in Europe.
“The Premier League should beware. This man is more than just a real handful.”
Pandey is right. Tottenham had previously been linked with Haller when German outlet FAZ reported last October that Spurs were keen on the striker.
For whatever reason the North Londoners did not push through a move, though.
And West Ham fans will be hoping they are the ones to benefit.