The potential signing of striker Salomon Rondon could have turned West Ham into a different animal next season.
Rondon had a release clause of £16.5million and West Ham were reported by the Daily Star to have made approaches for the Venezuelan international who eventually followed former boss Rafael Benitez to Dalian Yifang in China.
The powerful forward was influential at St James’ Park last season, with his partnership with Ayoze Perez contributing to more than half of Newcastle’s goals.
Despite the striker’s success in the Premier League and West Ham’s suggested approaches, Rondon has admitted that the Hammers failed to make a “proper offer” for him this summer.
Speaking in an interview with the Sun, Rondon said: “We never saw a proper offer. I was waiting to see if Pellegrini would call and say, ‘Do you want to come to West Ham? We have a good project. We are trying to go to the Europa League’.”
“But I never received that call and Rafa was calling me all the time, so I chose to go to China.”
This could surely have been a mistake on Pellegrini’s behalf, with Rondon basically admitting that he would have snapped at the chance to play at the London Stadium, a potential Hammers mishap.
The 29-year-old would no doubt have played a back-up role to club-record signing Sebastien Haller, with Javier Hernandez now the more likely option to take that role.
Comparing the two attacker’s stats via WhoScored, it is clear to see that Rondon would have provided much more of a threat off the bench.
Rondon was involved in 10 more goals last season, and averaged more shots, key passes and completed more dribbles per game – with all three stats combining to make him a much bigger threat to opposition defences.
West Ham surely missed a trick by not taking their approaches for Rondon and will surely live to regret not securing a reunion with Pellegrini.