Exclusive: Why former Ligue 1 star ended up at West Ham rather than the likes of Arsenal & Man City

French football expert Jonathan Johnson has written exclusively for CaughtOffside about the struggles of both Lucas Paqueta and Nayef Aguerd in their time at West Ham.

Paqueta joined the Hammers from Lyon last summer, while Aguerd was brought in from Rennes, so Johnson knows plenty about how both players performed during their days in Ligue 1.

Looking at how they’ve got on since moving to the Premier League, Johnson admits it’s been a bit disappointing, though he also insists he’s not surprised that Paqueta has proven a bit of a flop at the London Stadium.

The Brazilian midfielder is someone clearly capable of brilliant moments, but Johnson admits that consistency has been an issue for him throughout his career.

Despite previous links with the likes of Arsenal and Manchester City, Johnson has suggested this is perhaps why he ended up at West Ham instead and why he’s failed to live up to expectations.

west ham lucas paqueta nottingham forest
Lucas Paqueta in action for West Ham

“We saw two big talents from Ligue 1 move to West Ham last summer, as Lucas Paqueta made the move from Lyon and Nayef Aguerd joined from Rennes. It’s disappointing to see that they’re now struggling to reproduce their best form in the Premier League,” Johnson said.

“Equally, however, if you were to ask me if I was surprised to see Paqueta flopping at West Ham, I’d have to say I’m not entirely shocked. I was more surprised by Aguerd, who is a really solid defender, but with him I think you have to factor in that he had a very bad injury quite early on in his West Ham career.

“It’s also worth noting that it’s not generally been a great year for West Ham, with some of their other big names also going through a dip in form, and they’re now in a relegation battle. I think Aguerd was an astute signing, a good fit, but Paqueta was always going to be a bit of a gamble.

“Before he moved to West Ham, we heard of interest from big clubs like Arsenal and Manchester City, and there’s a reason Paqueta has had admirers like that before, because technically he’s got phenomenal ability, he’s a very fine player on his day, but consistency has always been a big question-mark for him.

“In the Premier League you always have to be at your best game in, game out, but Paqueta, throughout his career, has never been that kind of player. Throughout his career in Europe he’s had some sublime moments and eye-catching performances, but also games where he barely even registers, so I’m less surprised by his struggles at West Ham.

“What could the future hold for them this summer? I think it would be difficult for West Ham to keep hold of them if they were to go down – there’ll be a number of clubs, if not quite at the top tier, but perhaps at a sort of Europa League level, who will be looking at those kinds of opportunities.”

The post Exclusive: Why former Ligue 1 star ended up at West Ham rather than the likes of Arsenal & Man City appeared first on CaughtOffside.

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