BREAKING NEWS: Hammers add Leeds United’s Sam Byram for £4m
Premier League outfit West Ham United have signed Leeds United academy product Sam Byram for a reported fee of £4m, and will wear number 22.
The 22-year-old Elland Road academy product, who can play at right back or further forward on the wing, has penned an four-and-a-half year deal with the Hammers after rejecting a new contract at the Whites.
— West Ham United FC (@whufc_official) January 20, 2016
Premier League a “childhood dream”
“I’m unbelievably proud and happy to join a Club as big as this,” said Byram. “I’m just looking forward to what the future holds and hopefully I can achieve things with the team going forward.
“It’s a childhood dream of mine to play in the Premier League, so to have the chance to get into a team like this and I just want to get my head down, work hard and hopefully get a chance.
“I spoke to the manager and he is one of the main reasons which attracted me to West Ham. I think he’s done unbelievably well with his team so far, so I’m really looking forward to working with him and his staff.
— Coral (@Coral) January 20, 2016
“My uncle and my cousin are big West Ham fans and have bought their tickets for the new stadium. My uncle was down here yesterday getting a shirt with my name on the back! It’s nice to have them down here and they’ll help me settle so I’m looking forward to seeing them.
“I’m also really looking forward to seeing the new Stadium in person. That was another big part in me wanting to come here. It’s a massive part of the future of the Club and I can’t wait to see and hopefully play in it.”
Wealth of experience at such a young age
Byram has made almost 150 first-team appearances in his career to date, and now joins 9/2 top six finish chances West Ham where he will compete with Arsenal loanee Carl Jenkinson for a starting spot at Upton Park.
Voted Championship player of the month for December 2015, Byram is believed to have interested a number of top Premier League clubs but chose the Hammers in favour of Everton, who were early favourites for his signature.
Leeds had to sell him in the January transfer window or risk losing Byram for nothing at the end of the campaign.
Byram returns close to the place of his birth, which was in nearby Essex, though he was brought up and schooled in Yorkshire.