Robbie Keane urges West Ham to sell Dimitri Payet and sign someone new
By Stephen Mills
Last Updated: 22/01/17 12:36pm
Robbie Keane believes West Ham are better off without Dimitri Payet and has urged the club to sell him as soon as possible.
The France international has not played in the Hammers' last two Premier League matches as he tries to engineer a move to former club Marseille, citing family reasons.
However, West Ham won both of those matches - against Crystal Palace and Middlesbrough - convincingly, and Keane reckons his former club should sell the 29-year-old quickly and reinvest the money.
"There's a problem there," he told Goals on Sunday.
"It is looking like that the best thing for the club and him is probably to leave, certainly if you can get good money for him.
"He is a top, top player, but they are flourishing since he announced he wants to go.
"When you have a player who is a special talent and wants to leave, there is always a few in the dressing room, people like Mark Noble who is a legend there, who is thinking 'this is my club and you just want to walk away'.
"Everybody has their own situations. I don't know if he's homesick and his family wants to go home, but I think for West Ham, try and get the money and get someone in this window or in the summer."
Scotland manager Gordon Strachan was also on the Goals on Sunday sofa and argued West Ham's improved form might be a direct consequence of the Payet situation.
He believes the other players may be working harder in the absence of their star player.
"It can bind the squad together," Strachan said.
"Sometimes you have an individual that's so good that you rely so much on him and the rest take a back seat.
"Now it's a case of 'we've not got him here, we'll all have to pitch in and do a bit more'. They probably feel more comfortable that way.
"Sometimes the players feel undervalued when everybody is talking about one player and it can wear them down.
"There's freedom when that player is not there and they can go out and play. They have done incredibly well and seem to be a more rounded team in this period."