West Ham lead chase for Facundo Ferreyra

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West Ham have emerged as favourites to land Shakhtar Donetsk’s out of favour Argentinian striker Facundo Ferreyra as they continue to search for a replacement for the injured Andy Carroll, according to Goal.

The 23-year-old forward, a member of Shakhtar’s South American contingent, is said to be growing increasingly concerned at the violent unrest in Ukraine.

Furthermore he lacked game time for the club last term and would be keen to gain first team football in order to continue with his promising development.

With Carroll out for up to four months and the Argentine likely to be allowed to leave on loan, he could be a perfect recruit for Sam Allardyce as it would suit all parties involved.

Star quality

Since his breakthrough season with Argentine club Banfield as a 19-year-old, Ferreyra has consistently scored goals at all levels of the game -- including four for his country's under-20 side at the South American championships in 2011.

That record elevated his status, but 16 goals in 21 games in a one-year spell with Velez Sarsfield took his reputation to the next level and made many regard him as a star in the making.

It was in earning the top scorer crown with Sarsfield that he showed a completeness to his game, leading the line alone and helping his club to a league title.

Ferreyra's potential star quality stems from his intelligent movement and confidence in front of goal. When the ball falls to him in the box, he is superb at creating space for a shot while he will continually look to pull off the shoulder of his marker and exploit his exceeding pace.

Suits style

He is a tall and pacey forward that could thrive in the Premier League, and his goal scoring record in recent seasons with both Sarsfield and Shakhtar is mightily impressive.

There had been initial worries about his lack of physicality, but Ferreyra put to bed those doubts with a sensational season for Sarsfield in which he demonstrated finishing prowess with both head and feet.

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However, Ferreyra will require a side that plays to his strengths if he is to succeed. For all his competence in the air, he is not an Andy Carroll in that he will bully defenders and hold up the ball.

The Hammers would need to be precise and neat in their approach play which is what Allardyce is expected to be aiming to provide in the new season.

Great signing

At just 23, he is approaching his prime and has the potential to push for a place in the Argentine national team in coming tournaments and Upton Park would be a great stage for him to showcase his talents.

Ferreyra could represent reasonable value for the Hammers due to Shakhtar’s abundance of attacking quality already at their disposal, and he potentially has a great future ahead of him.

He may not be a household name, but he would certainly be a signing worth getting excited about and he could even be available on an initial loan deal, which would suit West Ham.

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