West Ham led the last-minute recruitment yesterday on a transfer deadline day light on late big-money deals but heavy with recrimination – and which still managed to set a new spending record for the summer window.
The Hammers beat the evening deadline to make four signings – striker Nikica Jelavic and winger Michail Antonio plus the on-loan pair of midfielder Alex Song and forward Victor Moses – as Premier League clubs took their outlay to £818m.
But the biggest controversies surrounded deals that did not happen, with West Brom criticising Tottenham’s approach after shunning two deadline-day bids for striker Saido Berahino, who in turn vowed never to play for the Baggies again.
Manchester United, who confirmed the arrival of Monaco forward Anthony Martial for £35m in a transfer that first emerged on Monday, also engaged in a war of words with Real Madrid over the collapsed £29m deal for goalkeeper David de Gea.
Chelsea’s low-key end to the window took another twist when they moved to beat Crystal Palace to the signing of £4m Reading and Jamaica defender Michael Hector.
The acquisition of the 23-year-old, who has returned to the Championship club on loan for the rest of the season, followed a £2.7m deal for Senegal centre-back Papy Djilobodji from Nantes hours earlier.
West Brom chairman Jeremy Peace said Berahino had been left “very unsettled” by Tottenham’s pursuit, which he said had been “designed to get him out of our club cheaply”.
Berahino voiced his frustration on Twitter as the deadline approached and Spurs saw third and fourth offers shunned, writing: “Sad how I can't say exactly how the club has treated me, but I can officially say I will never play [for] Jeremy Peace.”
Everton signed England winger Aaron Lennon, who spent time at Goodison Park on loan last term, on a permanent deal from Spurs for an undisclosed fee and bolstered their defence with £9.5m Argentina centre-back from River Plate. Watford made five signings, landing Belgian striker Obbi Oulare from Club Brugge, Crystal Palace midfielder Adlene Guedioura and on-loan Colombia forward Victor Ibarbo.