According to reports, Fiorentina declined offers from West Ham and Aston for their skipper Milan Badelj.
Badelj, 29, will be a free agent in the coming weeks when his contract with Fiorentina expires. Seeing the Croatian’s situation, West Ham and Aston Villa made advances, although the latter lost their appeal after failing to secure promotion to the Premier League.
While Fiorentina will be making attempts to keep their captain, should the Hammers go again for Badelj?
West Ham have appointed Manuel Pellegrini as their new head coach. The Chilean replaced David Moyes and has already promised that the club will play an attacking brand of football.
The Hammers have a lot of deadwood which needs to be disposed of before Pellegrini is able to sign new players. While signing a defender will be a priority for Pellegrini, the midfield too, clearly needs strengthening.
Skipper Mark Noble has started ageing, while the likes of Pedro Obiang and Cheikhou Kouyate have underperformed this season. West Ham need a reliable and a consistent midfielder capable of shielding the defence and making the team tick in all departments.
In that case, Fiorentina’s Milan Badelj would the ideal addition to West Ham’s ranks. It has been a season to forget for Fiorentina but Badelj himself had a positive campaign. The Croat may not be a player to hog the limelight but his presence in the heart of midfield has helped Fiorentina massively.
Badelj is an established deep-lying midfielder and has shined for the Viola once again. Calm and composed on the ball, the 29-year-old possesses a wide range of passing and crossing skills. The Croatian international is an experienced player.
Since joining Fiorentina from Hamburger in 2014, Badelj has been an incredibly reliable footballer and an ever-present in the side. He has led the team by an example after the sad passing away of skipper Davide Astori in March.
For all the qualities Badelj possesses, the player is tailor-made to play for West Ham. The Croatian would provide a much-needed boost to West Ham’s midfield, which had largely gone missing this season. Physically robust and a tenacious performer in midfield, Badelj has all the attributes required to be a success in the Premier League.
In the next few weeks, Badelj will become a free agent and the Hammers must plan to snap him up for free this summer. With a proven pedigree of playing at the very highest level, Badelj could be an ideal addition for West Ham.