West Ham’s proposed signing of former Arsenal and Manchester City midfielder Samir Nasri hangs in the balance, following concerns about the player’s fitness.
Nasri, who is serving an 18-month ban for contravening World Anti-Doping Agency rules while on loan at Spanish club Sevilla from City in 2016, was on the point of signing a short term deal with West Ham.
The 31-year-old can resume his career following the completion of the ban in January and West Ham manager Manuel Pellegrini, who knows the player well from their time together at City, was keen to link up again with the former France international.
Nasri has been free to train with the club of his choice since the start of the month, but a medical has flagged up fitness worries. There is a view from within West Ham that signing a player who has played no competitive football for almost a year and a half remains a major gamble, especially considering his wage demands of up to £80,000 per week.
Negotiations continue, though, and there is still a chance the six-month initial deal, with an option for longer, could happen, subject to restructuring around appearances and assurances about the player’s fitness.
It was on holiday in Los Angeles in December 2016, that Nasri was administered 500 millilitres of hydration in the form of sterile water containing micronutrients which exceeded the permissible limit. His contract at Turkish club Antalyaspor, whom he had joined from City in 2017, was mutually cancelled.
While doubts remain about Nasri’s fitness, there is no question about his ability. He won 41 caps for France and thrilled Arsenal supporters for three seasons and then City fans, following his £25million move in 2011.
During his time at City, Nasri flourished under Pellegrini and was an integral member of the team who lifted the Premier League title in 2014.