West Ham United striker Albian Ajeti has been hit with a big blow by manager Manuel Pellegrini’s hunt for a new attacker in January, according to Claret & Hugh.
The reliable Hammers news source claims that the Irons boss is preparing to make a move for a new frontman to serve as back up behind club record signing Sebastien Haller.
It was assumed that that would be Ajeti’s role when he was brought in from Basel for £8million this summer, but he has failed to make a Premier League appearance to date.
And Claret & Hugh’s report claims the news is a big blow for the 22-year-old, who will presumably see his game time reduced even further if a new striker is brought in.
It’s difficult to assess the Ajeti situation, because yes he has underperformed in two Carabao Cup games against lower league opposition, but he’s also not been given a chance to play with the top class playmakers who operate in behind Haller during Premier League action. The Switzerland international hasn’t truly experienced playing in front of Felipe Anderson, Manuel Lanzini and Andriy Yarmolenko, which will always improve a striker’s play. However, he’s not been able to produce against a League Two side in Newport County and a League One outfit in Oxford United. In the first game he did a bit better, as per WhoScored.com, producing three shots, two key passes and a WhoScored rating of 6.82. Like the rest of his teammates, though, he absolutely bombed against Oxford. The same website reveals that in that game he had just one shot – two more key passes – and a WhoScored rating of 5.73. So he’s not distinguished himself when he’s had an opportunity, but Pellegrini wanting a new frontman makes you question who made the decision to sign Ajeti in the first place.