Galatasaray coach says West Ham United target Burak Yilmaz was dropped for tactical reasons, no approach made

The Turkish side were saved by Yilmaz's second half cameo against Sivasspor.

This week has seen West Ham United linked with plenty of strikers. One name that has recently cropped up is that of Burak Yilmaz of Turkish giants Galatasaray.

It was reported by Turkish source Hurriyet that former Besiktas boss Slaven Bilic was ready to raid his former city rivals for their striker in a deal worth around £7 million.

Those rumours were given extra credence yesterday when, for the opening game of the Galatasaray season, Yilmaz was left on the bench.

He watched on as Hamza Hamzaoglu decided to start Arsenal loanee Lukas Podolski up front by himself – with Wesley Sneijder playing in behind.

It did not work however and eventually, at 2-0 down against Sivasspor, Yilmaz came into the game.

He had an immediate impact, scoring on the hour mark, before Podolski secured the point.

Speaking after the game the Galatasaray coach insisted that Yilmaz’s place on the bench was purely tactical and had nothing to do with The Hammers interest. He also told Zaman that there had been no official approach from West Ham:

"Purely tactical. When you play with the defensive one of Burak or Podolski will be missing. For this reason we make such a choice. "

"We have heard of no formal proposals. They're talking serious numbers. Burak’s thoughts that count."

West Ham are in need of a striker as Andy Carroll and Enner Valencia are both injured and other options are limited.

Yilmaz proved yesterday how important he could be to the cause at Upton Park.

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