Transfer Talk: Barrera signs to complete fruitful day for West Ham

Click to follow
The Independent Football

The signings of Pablo Barrera, Frederic Piquionne and Tal Ben-Haim completed an eventful day for West Ham yesterday.

The former Portsmouth defender Ben-Haim, 28, was picked up for free by the Hammers while striker Piquionne, 31, followed, signing for £1m on a three-year deal from Lyon. It is believed that the veteran Frenchman will be receiving £40,000 a week for his services after a successful season on loan with Portsmouth last season.

The third, and most complicated, signing for new manager Avram Grant was the Mexican international Barrera. The club announced on Thursday that the winger would join Upton Park on a four-year contract, pending a work permit, before yesterday securing a £4 m transfer from Mexican Premier League side UNAM Pumas.

"I am very happy to sign for West Ham United," the 23-year-old said. "I have been really taken by the reception I have received from the players and the manager."

The three newcomers will join other signing Thomas Hitzlsperger, from Lazio, in the coming season. However, with the club a reported £90 m in debt there is no rest for Grant, who, it is believed, is now discussing the sales of Alessandro Diamanti and Radoslav Kovac to Olympiakos.

Another day, and Transfer Talk would not be complete without another development in the prospective move of Internazionale's Mario Balotelli to the Premier League.

Reports in Italy yesterday claimed that City had made a bid of £21.1m for the 19-year-old Italian striker. Inter president Massimo Moratti has reminded those enthralled by the tug of war that "we are far from this solution" before quickly dismissing the offer, but it is expected that Roberto Mancini's side will certainly be making a higher offer in the coming days.

Aston Villa are in talks with Tottenham Hotspur over a £6m move for Robbie Keane. Villa manager Martin O'Neill wants Keane, 30, and Tottenham are prepared to let him leave for the right price. The former Liverpool striker spent the second half of last season on loan at Celtic, but Tottenham have ruled out another temporary deal.

Following reports that Celtic's Aiden McGeady could be on his way to the Premier League, his former team-mate at Parkhead, Stiliyan Petrov, has encouraged the player to consider Villa Park. "He is a player who can make something happen out of nothing," the Villa captain said. "I would be very happy if Aiden came here."

Barcelona

The Spanish champions have signed 25-year-old midfielder Adriano Correia from Seville for £11.4m. "The deal is practically done," said Seville president Jose del Nido. "He leaves the club on a high note. We are eternally grateful to him."

Portsmouth

The club have agreed a season-long loan for 29-year-old Stoke centre-half Ibrahima Sonko. Manager Steve Cotterill said: "He's a big, strong and powerful defender. I've followed him for a while and I thought he did a fantastic job at Reading."

Blackpool

The Premier League newcomers have announced that finance company Wonga.com will be their shirt sponsor next season. "We were able to come up with a deal that suits us both," the Seasiders' chairman Karl Oyston said.

Swansea

Brendan Rodgers, who left Reading in December, has agreed a 12-month contract to manage the Swans. He won only six matches in 23 games at the Royals, but views his new team as "progressive" and aims to "continue that philosophy."

Celtic

Striker Daryl Murphy has joined the Bhoys from Sunderland after agreeing a three-year deal. The Republic of Ireland international had 14 goals in 110 matches for the Black Cats, but spent the latter half of last season on loan to Ipswich.

Aston Villa

The agent for striker Mario Mandzukic, who had been a target for Villa, has said that, "Mario has had a medical at Wolfsburg and he has signed a contract." The 24-year-old Croatian scored 42 goals in 81 matches for Dinamo Zagreb.

Comments