Hammers sign Diame with a new striker set to follow

16:55 20 June 2012

Latest West Ham signing Mohamed Diame poses with the teams new Macron away shirt

Latest West Ham signing Mohamed Diame poses with the teams new Macron away shirt

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Mohamed Diame says he is “happy and excited” after becoming West Ham’s third permanent new signing of the summer.

The defensive central midfielder, 25, has signed a three-year contract at Upton Park and will officially become a Hammer when his current deal with Wigan Athletic expires on July 1.

The Senegal international is a free agent after spending three years with the Latics, for whom he made 103 league and cup appearances.

And he is looking forward to playing his part as West Ham seek to consolidate their place back in the Premier League.

Diame said: “I’m very happy and very excited to have joined the club and I’m looking forward to the start of the season.

“I know the fans here get behind the team all the time and I’m looking forward to showing everybody what I can do on the pitch.”

Hammers boss Sam Allardyce was pleased to have secured Diame’s signature after being linked with the player for several weeks.

“His potential is really good and he is ready to compete in the first team straight away as he has had three years in the Premier League already,” he said.

“He is 25 and can only get better – and I hope he can go on to prove that to me and all of the West Ham United fans.

“He will be a very exciting addition to the squad.”

Sunderland and Aston Villa had also been linked with the player, who joined Wigan from Spanish outfit Rayo Vallecano for a fee of £3.6million in 2009.

Diame joins goalkeepers Jussi Jaaskelainen and Stephen Henderson as West Ham’s new signings following the club’s return to the top flight via the play-offs.

West Ham are also hoping to bolster their attack with the signing of a new striker next week.

The Hammers have been linked with several hitmen in recent weeks, including Grant Holt of Norwich City and Real Madrid’s Spain under-21 international Joselu.

Reports suggest that West Ham have made an increased £5.5m bid for Holt, who scored 17 goals as the Canaries enjoyed a comfortable first season back in the Premier League.

The 31-year-old wants to quit the East Anglia club, but Norwich rejected the striker’s initial transfer request in May.

Joselu, 22 – full name Jose Luis Sanmartin Mato – was born in Germany, but after spending time with Celta Vigo has been playing for Madrid’s B team Castilla.

Allardyce has been in Italy, where it was claimed he was seen speaking to Juventus director Fabio Paratici.

One of his targets was believed to be Dutch winger Eljero Elia, 25, who made a £7m move from Hamburg to Juve last summer, but made only four appearances and recently submitted a transfer request.

Allardyce has also been linked with another Dutchman in the shape of Luc Castaignos, a 19-year-old striker who spent last season with Inter Milan after two years at Feyenoord.

Sweden defender Jonas Olsson is another potential target, but new West Bromwich Albion boss Steve Clarke is reluctant to let him go.

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