West Ham's Dimitri Payet has to be considered one of the world's best players on current form
On this day in 2015, West Ham United signed Dimitri Payet from Marseille for a fee believed to be in the region of £11 million. Few could have predicted the impact that the Frenchman would eventually have on the Hammers side, and there surely cannot be anyone left who do not understand the importance of this magnificent footballer to both club and country.
The 29-year-old's arrival in England coincided with West Ham's new found standing within the game. He has been a major part in the seismic shift of landscape witnessed at the club since the end of the 2014/15 season.
Payet's free-kicks have become legendary
An incredible first season in the Premier League saw him finish the campaign with an impressive record of nine goals and 12 assists in 30 appearances for the Hammers, and it is not only his numbers that have endeared him to the West Ham faithful. He possesses a certain aura, similar to that of Paolo Di Canio before him, that has ensured he is adored by everyone involved with the club. West Ham fans will be hoping the bond they share with their prized asset is enough to keep him at the club for the long term.
Payer's incredible talents have brought a certain amount of panache to the Hammers side, and his brilliance always gives the West Ham fans hope that they are still in games they may be losing. He has a whole repertoire of skills and tricks, although it can be argued that his greatest strength is his set-pieces.
Payet has excelled for France at The Euros
He wowed the crowd throughout the season with memorable free-kicks including wonder strikes against Manchester United, Crystal Palace and Bournemouth. Including games for France, he scored five times from direct free-kicks from January to April.
As West Ham prepare to enter a new chapter of their existence, with the Olympic Stadium as their home, it will be so important that they keep the enigmatic Frenchman, as they squeeze their way in among football's elite.
Payet can be the torch-bearer for the West Ham revolution, and one year on from his signing, his value to the club cannot be over-stated.
West Ham must ensure they do everything within their power to hold on to Payet