West Brom sign Grady Diangana from West Ham; Mark Noble 'angry'
West Ham midfielder Jack Wilshere told Diangana to 'go and do your thing in a club that respects you'
By Joe Shread
Last Updated: 05/09/20 8:44am
West Brom have signed Grady Diangana from West Ham for an undisclosed fee, with the winger signing a five-year deal at The Hawthorns.
Diangana is returning to familiar surroundings having spent last season on loan at West Brom. He registered eight goals and seven assists in 30 games as the Baggies returned to the Premier League.
His departure from the London Stadium has not gone down well with his former West Ham team-mates, with captain Mark Noble tweeting: "As captain of this football club I'm gutted, angry and sad that Grady has left, great kid with a great future!!!!!"
Declan Rice then retweeted Noble's comments before deleting it shortly afterwards. However, it is still listed under Rice's 'liked' tweets, while Noble's stance was also supported by former West Ham midfielder Trevor Sinclair.
Diangana said West Ham, the club he has been with since age 10, "will always have a special place in my heart" in a farewell Instagram post.
Midfielder Jack Wilshere responded in the comments of the post, saying: "Go and do your thing in a club that respects you. Big player with a big future."
Speaking to West Brom's website, Diangana admitted his sadness at leaving his boyhood club but says he is excited to return to Slaven Bilic's side.
"West Ham was all I had known before last season and I'm sure people will understand that I felt some sadness at leaving," he said.
"But coming here having had that season we have just experienced, there were no nerves about leaving at all. Knowing the manager and the players and the feelings I have got for the club just made me excited.
View this post on Instagram
I would like to say thank you to everyone @westham who have helped me to develop and become the player and person I am today, since the age of 10. I will forever be grateful for the opportunity to be able to represent such a great club ! Thank you to the fans for supporting me along the way, you will always have a special place in my heart Love and peace, God bless ⚒❤️
"Last season was really my first out of U23s football and was the most football I had ever played in a single season. I didn't know what it really meant to win games and especially as we were challenging for promotion from the start. Now I do.
"It taught me that it is not OK to survive. We need to go out to try to win every game and that is how we will approach every match."
After confirming the departure of Diangana - who made 21 appearances after coming through their academy - a West Ham statement read: "The decision to sell Grady has been made reluctantly but ultimately in the best interests of the club and with the aim to strengthen the squad in different areas at this time.
"The money received for Grady will be reinvested entirely in the team, in line with the manager's targets. We believe that this will give us the best possible chance of ensuring we have a balanced squad to compete in the Premier League and are capable of reaching our objectives and ambitions this season.
"Everyone at West Ham United would like to thank Grady for his service and commitment to the club, and wish him all the very best in his future career."
West Ham are already plotting to spend the money they have received from West Brom on Burnley defender James Tarkowski, for whom they have submitted a bid of more than £20m.
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