West Ham seeking a ‘minimum of five more’ signings

Date published: Friday 5th August 2016 8:03

Slaven Bilic wants to add at least five new players to his West Ham squad.

The Hammers face the prospect of playing five matches before the end of August after earning a place in the Europa League play-offs courtesy of a 3-0 win over NK Domzale.

Boss Bilic was without Euro 2016 stars Dimitri Payet, James Collins and Angelo Ogbonna as well as injured duo Aaron Cresswell and Manuel Lanzini, forcing him to name several youngsters on the bench.

And the Croatian is determined to dip into the transfer market before their Premier League opener against Chelsea a week on Monday, with a left-back and a striker the priorities.

“I have no problems saying playing in the Europa League lowers your chances in the Premier League,” he said.

“It doesn’t matter, we want to try. It brings positive things. You gain something, you lose something.

“Basically we have five games before the September international break and this squad is not big enough.

“Hopefully we will have a minimum of five players to add to this squad.”

One player who may be staying at the club is Diafra Sakho, whose move to West Brom fell through on Thursday over concerns about the striker’s fitness.

“I don’t know any details. I’m a bit surprised with that,” added Bilic. “He’s our player, he’s contracted to us and could be a great player. That’s all I can say about it.

“I am a bit sorry for him and a bit surprised that he didn’t pass the medical.

“He’s a good player, he’s our player and as long as he is our player he is very capable. He’s a quality player.”

Cheikhou Kouyate’s brace and a goal from new signing Sofiane Feghouli ensured West Ham got off to a winning start at their new London Stadium home.

Bilic’s side were 2-1 down after the first leg in Slovenia but secured their passage through with a comfortable victory in front of 54,000 fans.

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