West Ham miss out as prolific goalscorer seals £17m move elsewhere

Gabriel Barbosa of Flamengo (R) attempts a kick during the FIFA Club World Cup Final match between Liverpool FC and CR Flamengo at Khalifa International Stadium on December 21, 2019 in...

West Ham United were reportedly interested in the prolific striker's services.

Gabriel Barbosa of Santos runs during a match between Santos and Palmeiras for the Brasileirao Series A 2018 at Pacaembu Stadium on July 19, 2018 in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

A player West Ham United have been linked with over the past few weeks has officially made a decision on his future.

According to a report in the Daily Mail from the end of December, previous West Ham manager Manuel Pellegrini was pushing the Hammers board to sign Gabriel Barbosa in January.

FC Inter News had also linked West Ham to the 23-year-old, while Passione Inter suggested fellow Premier League side Crystal Palace was also interested in his services.

 

With 34 goals in all competitions, Gabigol thoroughly impressed as he helped Flamengo to the Serie A title and Copa Libertadores glory for the first time since 1981 (Transfermarkt).

Though the Brazilian's previous time in Europe was not particularly fruitful, with one goal apiece for Inter Milan and Benfica (Transfermarkt), his quality has been on show back in Brazil, first at Santos and then at Flamengo.

However, Gabigol's apparent priority was to remain at Flamengo, and it has now been officially confirmed that the Brazilian side has signed him from Inter on a fee reported by ESPN as being €20million (around £17million).

South American football expert Tim Vickery slated Gabigol last week for allegedly thinking West Ham were "too small" for him, in conversation with talkSPORT.

Gabriel Barbosa of Flamengo (R) attempts a kick during the FIFA Club World Cup Final match between Liverpool FC and CR Flamengo at Khalifa International Stadium on December 21, 2019 in...

"(Inter) haven’t had an offer from a big European club. He’s 23, he failed absolutely dismally in Europe with Benfica and Inter," Vickery told Hawksbee and Jacobs (22 January, 3pm).

"What was coming out in Brazil was he thought the club (West Ham) were too small for him. And if he’s thinking that, he’s an idiot because he’s very unlikely to get a big European club now - you know, one of the giants.

"But a club of the stature of West Ham, who have a magnificent history in their own right, you do well there and then you’ve proved yourself in Europe and one of the bigger European clubs might well be interested in you."

Fans arrive at The London Stadium before the Carabao Cup Third Round match between West Ham United and Macclesfield Town at The London Stadium on September 26, 2018 in London, England.

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