In the latest West Ham news, boss Manuel Pellegrini has added a sixth new face to his squad with the capture of defender Fabian Balbuena from Corinthians.
The Paraguay international will be taking a step into the unknown in the Premier League as he has never played domestic football in Europe, plying his trade in Paraguay before switching to the Brazilian club in 2016.
The 26-year-old joins Ryan Fredericks, Issa Diop, Lukasz Fabianksi, Jack Wilshere and Andriy Yarmolenko in moving to the London Stadium this summer, with Lazio midfielder Felipe Anderson also on the verge of making a move to the Hammers.
Balbuena, who has penned a three-year contract, is looking forward to the next chapter in his career and hopes to help West Ham fulfil their ambitions over the next few seasons.
“I’m really excited for this new challenge and my target is to meet the demands of the Premier League,” he told the club’s official website. “Obviously to be at West Ham is an extra motivation, and I want to do my best to help the team.”
The capital outfit have decided to clear the boards and start again after flirting with relegation last term, with David Moyes jettisoned as coach after just one season.
Pellegrini is back for a second stint in English football, having guided Manchester City to the 2013-14 Premier League title and has been given the funds to fashion his own team.
West Ham’s new director of football, Mario Husillos, believes the latest recruit has everything it takes to make a real impression at the club.
“He is a player of great strength, character and personality,” he said. “To be captain of Corinthians, one of the biggest clubs in South America, requires a very strong mentality, and he also has international experience with Paraguay.”
West Ham are 7/1 with Paddy Power to be relegated next term but the fans will hope that a revamped squad might feature at the other end of the table.