Payet scored a brilliant free-kick against Manchester United on Sunday.

Missing out on Payet epitomises English clubs' tendency to splash the cash too hastily

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Manchester United spent £30 million on Memphis Depay; Manchester City signed Raheem Sterling for £49 million; Liverpool paid £32 million for the services of Christian Benteke.

£111 million spent on three players yet to prove their worth - safe to say the Premier League's big-money purchases last summer haven't paid off.

Of all transfers made last year, though, one stands out: Dimitri Payet to West Ham for just over £10 million.


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Very few new signings have made the same impact that Payet has on the Hammers, and had it not been for an untimely knee injury earlier this season, it's likely he would have come close to his 17 assists made for Marseille last season.

The Frenchman has brought with him a new approach to Upton Park, providing a faster, slicker and more attractive brand of football.

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Ultimately, West Ham's gain has come at a huge loss to the Premier League's elite. Amidst their search for the most expensive talent on the market, using their extensive scouting networks, they overlooked one of Europe's most talented playmakers.

Some might point to Payet's age as a potential deterrent from signing him, but this is no excuse. Arsenal were once linked with the 28-year-old but failed to pursue his signature, whilst Newcastle reportedly rejected the chance to sign him because of his age - an awful decision given where they currently stand in the Premier League.


Payet's talent was epitomised by his magnificent free-kick against Manchester United over the weekend, beating David de Gea from range with a delightful, curling strike that crashed off the post and in.

This wasn't his first free-kick scored for the Hammers, of course, but quite possibly his finest.

Failure to identify Payet as a player worth signing will haunt Premier League scouts, suggesting England's elite clubs must look more extensively before splashing the cash on a player who might not be as good as someone half the price.

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