Football

West Ham complete Chicharito signing

West Ham's eye-catching recruitment spree continued yesterday as former Manchester United striker Javier Hernandez completed a £16million (S$28.5m) move from Bayer Leverkusen.

The 29-year-old, Mexico's all-time leading scorer, has signed a three-year deal to become the Hammers' fourth new arrival during the pre-season transfer window.

Hernandez scored 59 goals during his five-year spell at Man United, and also previously spent time on loan at Real Madrid.

The chance to return to England was too good to turn down, he told the club's official website.

He said: "I am very happy to join West Ham United.

"For me, the Premier League is the best league in the world and when the opportunity came, I was desperate to sign for this club.

"It was not a difficult decision. West Ham is an historic club, and very ambitious - this summer you can see with the players signed that they are looking to have a very good season.

"I've had three fantastic years playing in Spain and Germany, but England was really the first big chapter in my career and I am so happy to be back.

"I am desperate for the season to start and to help the team achieve all their objectives."

Known as "Chicharito", Hernandez follows Pablo Zabaleta, Joe Hart and Marko Arnautovic to the Olympic Stadium during this transfer window.

He will bolster a strike force that was depleted towards the end of last season, with injuries to Andy Carroll and Diafra Sakho leaving boss Slaven Bilic with just on-loan Jonathan Calleri to choose from in attack.

Their shrewd transfer business hasn't gone un-noticed at rival clubs, with Man United manager Jose Mourinho recently saying: "It looks like they are playing to win the Premier League, too."

The Red Devils take on West Ham in their opening EPL match of the new season on Aug 13.

Hammers joint-chairman David Sullivan was clearly delighted with their new capture.

Sullivan, who also played down a potential move for Arsenal's Jack Wilshere, told talkSPORT: "I think he (Chicharito) is potentially the best player who has ever come to the club.

"In recent years, he is probably the best proven goalscorer we have signed since we have been at the club.

"He's done it in the Premier League with Manchester United. We were lucky he only had a year left on his contract with his club and that allows you to negotiate a deal.

"We tried very hard to get him two years ago but unfortunately he chose the German club ahead of us." - PA SPORT

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