Does former Fulham man hold key to solving West Ham woes?
Saturday’s 1-0 victory at Crystal Palace gave West Ham United fans some much-needed cheer after a dismal start to the season. But the Irons’ continued struggle to create chances has seen Slaven Bilic turn his eye to Besiktas winger Kerim Frei.
The 22-year-old impressed throughout the 2015-16 campaign, chalking up five goals and as many assists as the Turkish giants lifted the Super Lig title for the first time in seven seasons, and reached the last eight of the Turkish Cup.
In addition to his impressive displays last season, the lightning-quick winger has already proven that he can cope with the physical demands of English football.
Frei began his professional career at Fulham, playing 33 times for the Cottagers before Kara Kaltallar snapped the youngster up for a bargain £2.68m back in 2013.
And the Turkish international has subsequently impressed against some of the Premier League’s top sides in the Europa League – starring as Besiktas beat Tottenham Hotspur and knocked out Liverpool during the 2014-15 season.
With Andre Ayew’s fitness a continued concern and Dimitri Payet struggling to recapture his best form, the Hammers are short of options on the left-wing – meaning Bilic could swoop for the Turkish talent sooner rather than later.
He could also be available at a very reasonable price, with Transfermarkt.co.uk estimating Frei’s asking price at £4.25m.
However, Bilic’s main focus right now will likely be on Saturday’s game with Sunderland, as the Hammers look for a third successive home win over the Black Cats.
The past two meetings on the Irons’ turf have ended with 1-0 victories, so the 13/2 for the east London outfit to triumph by that scoreline again looks like great value.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing