West Ham United are stepping up their pursuit of Antonin Barak and will pay £10 million to bring the Hellas Verona ace to the Premier League, as reported by L’Arena.
And Barak, the towering Czech international, is another who is giving us serious Tomas Soucek vibes.
And not just because he hails from the Czech Republic.
At 6ft 3ins, this is a midfield monster with plenty of goals in the locker. Barak scored seven times in Serie A last season, making a habit of storming into the penalty area before finishing in emphatic fashion.
Given the way Soucek adapted to life in England, making his £19 million price-tag look like a snip, you can see why West Ham would be attempting to repeat the trick with his 26-year-old compatriot.
Can Antonin Barak replicate Tomas Soucek’s Premier League success?
Barak was first linked with a move to the London Stadium a few weeks ago but, with the dust settling after a thrilling European Championships, it seems that the Hammers are now about to kick things up a notch.
Italian publication L’Arena claims that West Ham are ready to pay £10 million for Barak.
That is more than Bundesliga outfit Eintracht Frankfurt are willing to stump up, just a month after Hellas Verona turned Barak’s loan deal from top-flight rivals Udinese into a permanent transfer for a bargain £5 million.
Should Hellas cash in, they will double their money in the blinking of an eye. Smart business, especially in the COVID era.
With Soucek and Declan Rice now firmly established as Moyes’ first-choice midfield duo, however, Barak would hardly be guaranteed regular football in the English capital.
Then again, given that West Ham have Europa League football to factor into the equation, he should not be short of opportunies to impress.
It’s a long old season after all.