Hammers news are reporting, via one of their trusted sources ExWHUEmployee, that Leeds are interested in making a move for our former player Robert Snodgrass. Whilst the report suggests a move is unlikely because of two main reasons, I think there’s potential to make something happen if both sides just negotiate a little bit better and come to a compromise.
Let’s look at the West Ham side of it. Their preferences, according to the report, are to either sell or keep Snodgrass, as they don’t want him to go out on loan because he’s 31 and there’s not a lot more developing he can do. So they might as well cash in, even if it’s for a small fee. Given how close we were last season in securing promotion, they could even add a clause where they get a bonus if we get promoted this time around.
Leeds, on the other hand, have been looking at wingers all summer, to such an extent that you’d think we were playing with just nine men each game last year and didn’t have anyone out wide.
We’ve predominantly been looking at Liverpool and their academy with the likes of Ryan Kent and Harry Wilson & Ovie Ejaria linked. Our scouts have also looked elsewhere, as reports have linked the Whites with Bristol City’s Callum O’Dowda and Carlisle United’s Liam McCarron.
Now let’s take McCarron here for a moment. He’s only 18-years-old and, although he’s highly rated with Leeds rumoured to be submitting a £250,000 bid, there’s still a lot that needs to be brought out of his game. One assist from twenty appearances predominantly off the bench in League Two last season doesn’t translate well into being an instant success in the Championship. It took Jamie Vardy a year of getting used to things before he started getting a decent return when he made the step up from Fleetwood in the National League to the Championship with Leicester back in 2012, and McCarron is much further behind in his development than Vardy was then.
Now, Leeds are reportedly concerned about Snodgrass’ age and would prefer someone younger, hence why we’re looking at such young prospects. However, that shouldn’t be an issue if you just think about it more logically.
If we got Snodgrass on, let’s say a two-year deal, we could get one season out of him where he’s our main winger week in and week out, whilst at the same time nurturing and helping McCarron develop. Then next season, hopefully in the Premier League, we can cross that bridge of his age when we come to it.
We could even add one of those ‘with the option of another year’ clauses into his contract if the board feel McCarron needs a little more time.
Whilst EXWHUEmployee’s report suggests a deal is dead in the water because of how the two clubs see their respective sides of the argument, I think that if both sides just break away from their stubbornness, there’s a compromise there that can help both teams. And when or if Leeds finally break our 15 years and counting spell outside the top flight, both teams would stand to benefit from it.