It is fair to say West Ham United fans are feeling flat after the January transfer window.

Many Hammers supporters felt the club needed to strengthen their injury-hit squad to breathe new life into a faltering campaign.

But they were somewhat underwhelmed when little known Portuguese forward Mesaque Dju was announced as a new signing the day before the deadline.

The 19-year-old was released by Benfica.

And he was immediately snapped up by West Ham who had been monitoring his career closely.

Photo by Arfa Griffiths West Ham United via Getty Images

Hammers youth recruitment rarely pays off

Hammers fans are used to seeing the club take a chance on young players released from other clubs.

But in truth they have had very little success with only Declan Rice graduating to and establishing himself in West Ham’s first team.

West Ham fans should not write Dju off, though. Because Academy chief Terry Westley has compared him to first team star Michail Antonio on the club’s official website.

“We had seen Mesaque play for Portugal and win the U17 and U19 European Championship titles,” Westley told whufc.com.

 

“He was an attacking player who was always highlighted when you watched him in those games.

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Dju compared to Hammers first team star

“We always said that, should he become available, he would be of interest to us and due to our extensive networking and recruitment department, we found out that the opportunity had arisen to sign the player, so we stepped in quickly and secured his signature.

“Mesaque is a wide player who is different to the current young wide players we have in Grady Diangana, Nathan Holland, Martin Samuelsen and Dan Kemp, who are what you would class as a dribblers.

“He is a dynamic player with great pace and power, a little bit like Michail Antonio.

“He is six-foot plus, two-footed, strong and can deliver with quality from the left or the right, and could even develop in to a number nine with his attributes, which we believe could make him a Premier League player.”

Photo by Arfa Griffiths West Ham United via Getty Images

First team chance could come sooner than Dju think

Antonio has his knockers among Hammers fans.

But West Ham are in need of as much pace and power as possible in their ranks.

West Ham fans will be hoping Dju is more Rice and Toni Martinez.

And given West Ham have little left to play for this season it could be that the youngster gets a first team chance sooner than he thinks.

It will be up to him to take it.

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