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West Ham Chase Bournemouth Forward

West Ham United’s quest for a robust forward to replenish their attacking ranks took an intriguing twist recently. With Gianluca Scamacca’s boots to fill, their gaze turned southwards, specifically to Bournemouth’s Dominic Solanke. However, if they imagined a smooth transition, they were in for a surprise.

Bournemouth’s Stand on Solanke

It’s been widely discussed in footballing circles and most recently spotlighted by the Daily Echo that West Ham approached the Cherries to discuss a possible move for Solanke. Yet, in a move reminiscent of a stern parent safeguarding their prized possession, Bournemouth swiftly turned the Hammers away.

With the upcoming Premier League season fast approaching and both teams set to clash on its opening weekend, it does add an extra layer of intrigue to their fixture. Will it be an early-season grudge match or just another fixture?

Solanke’s Stellar Bournemouth Journey

While Solanke’s journey from Liverpool to Bournemouth in January 2019 for an eyebrow-raising £17.5 million might have raised some questions initially, the stats speak volumes of his time in Dorset. 56 goals and 27 assists from 174 appearances aren’t just numbers. They’re a testament to his integral role, especially in the past two years, becoming an essential part of the Bournemouth line-up.

Last summer, the bond between the Cherries and Solanke was further strengthened. A shiny new four-year contract was the symbol of trust, appreciation, and ambition.

The Curious Case of the Missing Solanke

Intrigue surrounding Solanke doesn’t end with West Ham’s pursuit. Last Saturday’s pre-season fixture saw the star striker sitting out. The 2-0 victory against FC Lorient went on without Solanke’s direct participation. Kieffer Moore, in his absence, took up the mantle, playing the entire match and even netting a goal.

The decision of keeping Solanke on the bench was a tactical one, explained by head coach Andoni Iraola to the Daily Echo. His words left no room for doubt: “We decided not to put Dom on, even if he was on the bench. If you feel anything that is not 100 per cent, it was not the moment to take risks.”

What’s Next for Solanke?

The journey of Dominic Solanke, from his Liverpool days to being one of the first names on Bournemouth’s team sheet, is an interesting tapestry of talent and tenacity. As West Ham hovers around, hoping to snag him, the Cherries are in no mood to relent.

The opening weekend of the Premier League will not just be about football. It will also be a theatre of off-pitch narratives, where the protagonist is none other than Dominic Solanke.

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