West Ham to turn to former Everton man to solve goal crisis


Sam Allardyce’s desperate search for attacking reinforcements at Upton Park could see the West Ham boss turn to former Portsmouth and Blackburn striker Yakubu Aiyegbeni as a short-term solution.

The Hammers have struggled for goals in the Premier League this season, with last week’s 2-0 win over Cardiff only the third time in 14 top flight games that the side has registered more than one goal in a match.

West Ham also have the fourth worst record for goals scored in the Premier League this season notching up just 21 strikes in 21 games, with only the three teams below them in the division – Cardiff, Sunderland and Crystal Palace – registering less so far this term.

Big summer signing Andy Carroll is only now returning from injury and Carlton Cole, meanwhile, has yet to hit anything resembling consistent goal scoring form for the Hammers, meaning Big Sam is on the search for a low-cost stop-gap to ensure his team avoid relegation, priced at 5/2 with Ladbrokes.

Monaco new boy Lacina Traore was previously linked with an immediate loan move to London but Allardyce could still be tempted to look elsewhere, with one potential option being Yakubu.

The 31-year-old is currently on the books of Chinese league club Guangzhou R&F, where he has just completed an excellent season for the side, following his move from Blackburn Rovers.

A tally of 24 goals in 43 games certainly eclipses the efforts of Nicolas Anelka and Didier Drogba, who both struggled to consistently score in the Far East.

And the West Ham boss is unlikely to have any qualms about recruiting a player from one of the world’s lesser leagues, having previously signed Fernando Hierro from Qatari club Al Rayyan in what proved a masterstroke for the then Bolton boss.

Yakubu also has a pedigree of goals in England, with 17 in 30 Premier League appearances for Blackburn and with a World Cup just around the corner, the Nigerian will know a successful loan spell at Upton Park could see him force his way into Stephen Keshi’s plans.

With the Hammers currently 1/3 shots to survive the drop, the Yak could be the man to fly in to the rescue.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Jack Beresford

Jack Beresford is a content writer with over five years of experience in writing about sport and betting, including a two-year spell with Axonn Media. Contributes articles to HereIsTheCity and Lad Bible, while previous credits include Bwin, FTB Pro, Bleacher Report and the QBE rugby. Avid follower of tennis, rugby union, motorsport and football, Jack also writes about poker for Cardspiel.com alongside Guardian journalist Dominic Wells.