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Another January and another French player gets “Le Bleus”

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Payet needs to step-up

Dimitri Payet does not want to play for West Ham ever again. What is it about French players? The grandmasters of going on strike when they decide to say “au revoir” to their current paymasters.

Payet wants to move back to Marseille in this January’s transfer window, after helping West Ham finish a creditable 7th last season and within shouting distance of the 4th Champions League spot. Payet is West Hams marquee player, costing them nearly 11 million pounds in June 2015. Last season he scored 9 goals with 12 assists and his performances lived up to his hype and price tag.

This year, after intense speculation he would leave the Hammers in the summer, his form has dipped dramatically. Payet has only scored 3 times in all competitions and his attitude on the pitch has been criticised by pundits and fans alike. It seems his eyes are firmly focussed on the Channel Tunnel rather than helping his struggling team.

West Ham’s faithful hail Bilic’s stance!

Slaven Bilic, the West Ham manager did not mince his words when talking about Payet’s recent behaviour in Friday’s press conference. His stance to leave Payet out of the squad and declare the player is not for sale is the noble act you expect from Bilic.

Bilic is an honest chap and it was refreshing to hear the West Ham masses resoundingly chant his name at the end of an emphatic 3-0 rout of fellow Londoners Crystal Palace. Bilic will be happy that the supporters are firmly behind him but even more satisfying for him will be the commitment his team played with.

Slaven Bilic

The owners, Gold and Sullivan, will be more pragmatic about what to do with Payet. At 29, they still have time to get a fair price for the unsettled Frenchman and will be likely to offload the want-away star, rather than having him tarnishing the mood around the team. With the window open until 31st January they still have time to find a suitable player or two to fill the void the miserable Frenchmen will leave. The have Payet at 5/2 to return to Marseilles, with a move to either PSG or Chelsea priced at 10/1 for the wantaway French star.

Quelle surprise!

French Prima Donnas throwing their toys out of their prams to get what they want is nothing new in the Premiership. Payet joins an extensive list of French stars throwing a tantrum to get the move they wanted. The two most infamous being Nicolas Anelka and Eric Cantona.

Nicolas Anelka, the French international striker was given the nickname “Le Sulk” after he declared his unhappiness playing in England and desire to leave Arsenal at the end of the 1999 season. His lack of enthusiasm when playing for the Gunners before his move to Real Madrid was likened to a player on strike. Controversy and falling outs followed Anelka throughout his career.

Eric Cantona, many will remember for his pure football talent and very French temperament. The mercurial Frenchman allegedly refused to carry on playing for the Leeds Championship-winning team of 1992 when Manchester United’s manager Alex Ferguson fluttered his eyelashes in his direction. A deal was quickly concluded between the two clubs for the sale of “Le Roi”

Chinese Yuan

Club loyalty is a thing of the past in the lucrative world of global football. It is not surprising most players look after number one and go in search of the big buck. The most recent phenomena is the Chinese Yuan. The Chinese Yuan has become a reality in luring Europe’s elite players to the far-flung corners of China. Chinese clubs find themselves in a position to pay players copious amounts, with salaries of over 600 000 GBP per week reportedly being offered to players

The Diego Costa rift with Chelsea could get as messy as the Payet affair after it was revealed that he has had head turned, and his agent is actually in China as we speak. This news comes even though Costa is top scorer for the current Premiership leaders (14 goals) and in with a very realistic chance of winning a Premiership title. What a move to China does to one’s international career we will have to wait and see. You wonder if Oscar lent him his Chinese dictionary before he left for Shanghai SIPG earlier this month?