Striker not heading to hammers

West Ham deny move for Mutu

December 29, 2009
By Soccernet staff

West Ham sporting director Gianluca Nani insists the Premier League club are not after Fiorentina striker Adrian Mutu.

Adrian Mutu, Fiorentina
GettyImagesAdrian Mutu: Not returning to the Premier League according to Gianluca Nani.

Speculation has been rife that Mutu is set for a return to London with the Hammers poised to make an audacious bid for the former Chelsea player.

The Romania international's agent claims a January move is not out of question but Nani has dismissed the reports outright.

"I would like to talk about serious things,'' Nani told Violanews.com. "I prefer not to say anything about Mutu. It's all rubbish. I'm saddened by all these voices which insist there's a deal. There's little respect and that's not right.''

Nani was the sporting director of Italian side Brescia before his move to West Ham and was responsible for bringing azzurri legend Roberto Baggio and current Barcelona bos Pep Guardiola to the club during his tenure.

Mutu has been one of Serie A's most consistent strikers over the past few seasons, netting 58 goals in 117 matches for Fiorentina since arriving at the Stadio Artemio Franchi in 2006.

The 30-year-old has had a troubled past few months as he battles against the €17million fine he has been ordered to pay Chelsea, although there is a glimmer of hope after the fine was temporarily suspended by the Swiss Federal Court.

Mutu cost the Blues £15 million in 2003 but was sacked a year later after he tested positive for cocaine, and was given a seven-month worldwide football ban.

After being axed by Chelsea and serving his ban, the Romanian joined Juventus in January 2005 before moving to Fiorentina at the end of the following season.

Mutu has become one of La Viola's key players and scored 13 goals in 19 games last campaign as he and Alberto Gilardino formed one of Serie A's most formidable partnerships.