Former Arsenal and Manchester City midfielder Samir Nasri joins West Ham United
Written by: Atrayo Bhattacharya
The former French international joins the club from London on the last day of his doping ban.
The Frenchman was a free agent since leaving his Turkish club, Antalyspor. The 31-year old also had a rough time when he served an 18-month doping ban for using intravenous drip treatment to cure his injury, however, he will be available for the Hammers from 1st January itself. He has signed a contract which keeps him at the club till the end of the season with the Hammers having an option to extend it by another year.
The Frenchman is back to the Premier League from where his career gathered pace. It was back in 2008 when he joined Arsenal from boyhood club Marseille. The midfielder had an impressive stint under manager Arsene Wenger and in 2011 he joined Manchester City. Nasri has won two Premier League titles and the League for the Cityzens in his illustrious six years at the club.
"Coming back to the most competitive league in the world, with a team full of ambition with a manager that I know... it's the best job in the world, and I'm really excited about it," said Nasri.
He has over 200 appearances in the league in total for both Arsenal and Manchester City. It will be a reunion for the Frenchman as his current boss, Manuel Pellegrini was there with City during his time at the club. However, with Pep Guardiola's arrival, the midfielder fell out of favour and went out on a loan spell to Sevilla.
Pellegrini told the Hammers' website: "I am happy to be working with him again."
"He has been working very hard in recent weeks to build up his fitness and condition after a long period without playing, and he is now very determined to return to his best."
The 31-year midfielder was initially slapped with a heavy six months ban for taking an intravenous drip that was against the World Anti-Doping Agency rules. He alleged back in 2016 during his time at Sevilla, of 500 millilitres intake of hydration in form of sterile water which was infused with micronutrient components, which exceeds the allowed limit according to the World Anti Doping Agency guidelines.
It was in February 2017 that a request from Sevilla for retroactive therapeutic use exemption (TUE) on Nasri was denied by the UEFA, which meant he had to face the consequences. In August UEFA decided to increase his ban from six to 18 months which actually started from July 2017.
The French midfielder has had his issues over fitness and discipline over the years but now he starting a new journey with West Ham and will again work with his former manager Pellegrini. The Hammers are currently 11th in the league table but with Nasri's arrival at the London Stadium, the fans will feel that he can propel the side to greater boundaries.
Published: Tue Jan 01, 2019 03:41 PM IST