There is no love lost between West Ham United and Tottenham Hotspur but Hammers boss David Moyes will be thanking his lucky stars that Spurs beat him to one signing in particular.
West Ham were heavily linked with young central midfielder Gedson Fernandes when Moyes returned to the London Stadium last year.
But at the 11th hour Fernandes joined West Ham’s bitter rivals Tottenham instead.
Hammers boss Moyes had even admitted a deal was close for Fernandes (whufc.com).
The player had even sparked excitement by using a West Ham emoji in a social media post – but later deleted it.
Tottenham entered the race and duly sealed the signing. But things did not work out too badly for West Ham as Moyes ended up signing Tomas Soucek instead.
Fernandes had been hyped as one of the prodigal young talents of European football. He went on to reveal that he snubbed West Ham for Spurs chiefly because Tottenham were playing in Europe and because compatriot Jose Mourinho was the manager at the time.
There was karma for the on loan Benfica talent when Mourinho omitted him from Tottenham’s Europa League squad and went on to lose his job.
His loan arrangement with Spurs was eventually cancelled while West Ham ended up finishing above their rivals last season to secure a place in the Europa League.
The Hammers came so close to agreeing a deal to sign the 21-year-old on loan with an obligation to buy for £33 million, according to a report from Sky Sports at the time.
And if proof was needed that the Hammers dodged a £33m bullet, it arrived at the weekend when it emerged Benfica are now desperately touting Fernandes around for £12m. The club are even said to be trying to offload him to Galatasaray but the Turkish club can only afford a loan.
“Benfica want €15m (£12m) to sell Gedson Fernandes,” Fabrizio Romano said on Twitter.
“Never accepted any approach for loan deal or similar this summer.
“From club sources they’re still convinced: he’s expected to stay.”
Just imagine if West Ham had committed to such a huge fee for the flop.
Instead Moyes is on a run of brilliant recruitment since taking total control of transfers on his return.
And West Ham fans will be hoping his record continues after the summer arrivals of Alphonse Areola, Kurt Zouma, Nikola Vlasic and Alex Kral.
In other news, Lingard looking a dead cert for West Ham reunion.