Just hours after confirming the £17.5m signing of Borussia Dortmund’s Andriy Yarmolenko, West Ham are now close to smashing their club record deal with a £40m move for Lazio star Felipe Anderson – two big statements of intent that will be tough to take for Benitez.
Pellegrini’s appointment at West Ham was a high profile one and reminded me a little of the moment we managed to lure Benitez to St James’ Park, but the difference in our two clubs in terms of current levels of ambition and investment has been frightening so far this summer.
Yes we’re closing in on an exciting loan deal for Kenedy (‘couldn’t afford’ permanent deal) and have pulled off two shrewd signings in Ki (free) and Dubravka (£4m), but West Ham are making huge moves in comparison – and it’s tough to take.
Breaking: West Ham have today applied for a work permit for Brazilian Felipe Anderson. The fee fee paid to Lazio will be around £37m plus add ons, possibly taking it past £40m. Story on @MailSport site soon #WHUFC
— Lee Clayton (@LeeClayton_) July 11, 2018
I’m not suggesting that Benitez will now be regretting the fact he didn’t go to West Ham when they showed interest earlier this summer, but this is certainly a reminder of what can happen when a big club with a good manager shows some ambition.
You get the feeling we’ll only see this sort of spending at NUFC if new owners come in – and it looks like that’s been put on the back burner for now.
Rafa will make the most of what he’s given and, who knows, it may not even work out for the big spending West Ham, but it’s pretty hard to watch when you know that could and should be us with Benitez in charge.
West Ham's summer signings:
— bet365 (@bet365) July 11, 2018