West Ham boss Sam Allardyce has ruled out signing journeyman striker Nicolas Anelka despite weeks of press speculation.
The French striker is keen to return to the Premier League from Chinese club Shanghai Shenhua after reportedly falling out with his own fans.
Anelka, 33, has already played under Big Sam at Bolton and enjoyed an excellent relationship with him, with Anelka’s goals helping to fire Bolton to the Europa League; and rumours have been flying around this transfer window that the pair would like to link up once again.
However, Allardyce has reportedly told Sporting Life that he decided against bidding- despite being quoted in the Daily Mail in November as saying that a possible deal “interested” him.
He said: “At the moment I am not in a position for Nicolas Anelka because my main priority is defenders...We have got Andy Carroll close to coming back and we have got Carlton Cole, Chamakh and we have also brought in Wellington (Paulista)”.
There is no telling whether the newspapers will let this one lie, but Sam certainly seems to have made his mind up.
By Lucy Woolford