West Ham have not given up in their bid to sign Sevilla centre-forward Youssef En-Nesyri despite their opening offer reportedly being rejected by the Spanish club.
According to The Athletic, the Irons tabled a bid worth £22.5million, plus £4.5million in add-ons, for the 23-year-old Morocco international. However, it was rejected by Sevilla.
An update by Estadio Deportivo adds that although Julen Lopetegui has refused to respond to speculation surrounding En-Nesyri’s future, the Sevilla manager knows that there’s still a chance a deal could be struck.
Sevilla haven’t told the Hammers that the forward is not for sale and talks are reportedly continuing.
And that bodes well for David Moyes and West Ham in their search to bolster their centre-forward options before the January transfer window closes.
En-Nesyri has scored 12 goals in 25 appearances across all competitions for Sevilla this season. Eight of those goals have come in La Liga, where the former Leganes striker has only started 10 times.
According to stats by Wyscout, En-Nesyri ranks a brilliant fourth in La Liga for goals scored per 90 minutes [0.7] and 12th for xG per 90 minutes [0.49]. Despite his high-ranking for goalscoring, the Moroccan is as low as 17th for shots per full league game [2.37], however, this simply illustrates how clinical he is in front of goal.
Below is an image of En-Nesyri’s shots at goal in La Liga this season and, as you can see, all but two of them have come from outside of the penalty area with the striker taking a lot of his chances inside the box.
Interestingly, En-Nesyri isn’t only a strong finisher of the ball, he’s also very good in the air.
No player has scored more headers than him in La Liga this season  while he ranks sixth in the Spanish top-flight for the number of headed efforts at goal . He’s joint-13th for the number of aerial duels he’s been involved in per 90 minutes too [8.52].
And this ability in the air, coupled with his prolific streak in front of goal, is why we believe he’d make such a perfect signing for West Ham this month.
Sebastien Haller, for all his flaws, was a monster in the air whenever he played for the Hammers this season.
Stats by Wyscout show that only two players averaged more aerial duels per 90 minutes than him in the Premier League [11.5] before he left for Ajax earlier this month. The Ivory Coast international also headed 11 shots at goal this term – just nine players have managed more.
Michail Antonio is the striker who En-Nesyri will be competing with for a spot in the West Ham side if he does swap Seville for London this month. Antonio ranks 17th for aerial duels per 90 minutes in the English top-flight [6.59]
It is clear that Moyes wants his strikers to be strong in the air and, as every top striker should be, clinical inside the penalty area.
En-Nesyri is one of the best strikers in La Liga at what he does and he would be a massive asset at the London Stadium for the rest of this season and beyond if the Irons can land him from Sevilla.
In other West Ham news, Moyes has shared an update on Antonio’s fitness ahead of the West Brom game.