Premier League newcomers Aston Villa made a late move for Villarreal playmaker Pablo Fornals, according to Claret & Hugh.
Villa’s interest caused the Hammers to intensify their bid for the Spanish international, and their deal for Fornals is seemingly now all but done.
It’s thought that all that remains is for the player himself to put pen to paper on his West Ham contract, but that a £24million deal could be completed in the next 48 hours.
It’s no surprise that a rival team came in for Fornals once they realised he was available. There probably weren’t too many teams in England who thought that a move for the Villarreal ace was achievable this summer, but once speculation with West Ham intensified, it’s natural that other sides considered trying to hijack the deal at the last minute. That’s clearly what Villa were trying to do, but it appears that they have failed in that attempt. The Hammers are seemingly on the verge of wrapping up a blockbuster deal for Fornals, who is a huge talent. He is a wonderfully creative, skilful player who would improve any side, so West Ham will be lucky to have him. However, an attacking midfielder is hardly the most pressing issue in Manuel Pellegrini’s side at this moment in time. They need a new left back, centre half, central midfielder and striker. Still, you can’t complain overly much when you manage to sign a player of Fornals’s ability.