The Hammers are likely to be on the lookout for a striker in the winter, with Michail Antonio their only senior option up front at this point of the season.
What’s the latest news with the Hammers’ strikers?
The Irons only have Antonio up front, with no other real options off the bench.
They do have the option of bringing in a youth team graduate but it would be a lot of pressure to play second fiddle to Antonio, while the likes of Andriy Yarmolenko and Said Benrahma are more suited as wingers than centre-forwards.
It suggests the Irons are almost certainly looking to see if they can do a deal for a striker in the upcoming window, and Hlozek has been continually linked with a move to the club.
Football Insider has reported that the Hammers have entered an enquiry to gauge Hlozek’s availability, with the club now having a connection with Sparta after Daniel Kretinsky, the biggest shareholder in the Czech club, invested in the Irons too.
The striker has scored four goals and laid on 11 assists this season, and already has 12 caps for the Czech Republic at the age of 19.
It seems as though the club may get a leg up in any pursuit then, and Brown believes that a move for the teenager makes more sense than a swoop for either Belotti or Martial.
Belotti has a deal that is expiring at the end of the season, while The Daily Mail has reported that Martial has been put on the transfer list by new manager Ralf Rangnick.
What did Brown say about the Hammers’ striker hunt?
Asked about the viability of a move for Hlozek, Brown told GiveMeSport: “It might be that kind of profile they look for. Yeah, I could see that.
“That kind of transfer being one they do more than Belotti or a Martial who would cost a lot of money and expects to play every week.”
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Is this smart business?
In short, yes.
West Ham are right to be hedging their bets on a young prospect who is only likely to improve than a player who carries with them the expectation of a hefty wage and plenty of game time.
Hlozek is just 19 and already has 33 goals and 33 assists in 111 appearances.
Going for Belotti would involve a hefty signing-on fee, a big wage, and he would also need minutes, while the same is true of Martial, with the addition of a transfer fee.
The former is a well-established international who will expect to be put on a big contract at the age of 27, while Martial currently takes home £250k p/w at United.
The latter has also struggled for minutes throughout the season, making just seven appearances in the Premier League, of which only two have been starts.
He has undergone something of a fall from grace at United and made 17 starts last season in the league before a cruciate knee ligament injury ruled him out.
That injury is likely to have had an effect on the Hammers’ thinking too, when they’re looking at a player to provide support to Antonio.
Moving for the teenager is the more sensible move, especially when one considers the Kretinsky connection.
It’s cheaper, he has more upside, and has also scored as many goals this season as Martial did last season.