West Ham's Diafra Sakho and a whirlwind Deadline Day
By Michael Weightman and Peter Smith
Last Updated: 31/08/17 11:53pm
Few players will have had a whirlwind transfer Deadline Day experience quite like Diafra Sakho.
Sakho skipped West Ham training to travel to France on Wednesday, where he agreed personal terms and completed a medical with Rennes despite no transfer fee being agreed - and without the club's permission.
However, the striker - who has endured injury problems throughout much of his three years in east London - saw his hopes of a move take a hit when West Ham co-chairman David Gold ruled out selling him on Wednesday evening.
"Diafra Sakho is not for sale in this transfer window he is an integral part of our first team squad and will play a part in our recovery" tweeted Gold.
That wasn't the end of the saga, though. Sakho was expected to attend West Ham training at 11am on Thursday but didn't turn up - because he was still in France.
The 27-year-old eventually returned to the UK at 2.30pm, wanting face-to-face talks with West Ham's owners.
First, though, he had to travel to Chelmsford Racecourse, where his representatives were watching their horse, Siege of Boston, win the 3.20pm. The diversion paid off - Sakho's £100 bet on his agent's horse earned him a £550 win.
After the race - which Sakho missed, as he was waiting in the car park - the player and his team headed to the London Stadium where they attempted to find a solution.
In the meeting, Sakho told West Ham he wanted to leave the club because of "personal problems which have nothing to do with football".
Sky sources understand West Ham were very understanding, the issues were resolved and Sakho - whose contract expires in the summer - may even be offered a new deal.
The day ended with Sakho making it clear he is proud to play for West Ham, has "total respect" for the fans and saying he now understands why he has to stay.