West Ham linked with £16 million move for Atlético Mineiro striker Lucas Pratto
West Ham's £16 million bid for Lucas Pratto could seal the Argentine striker's departure from Atlético Mineiro, one of the fan favourite at Belo Horizonte.
According to Globo Esporte, the value is much higher than what the team had expected to receive to release Pratto, and this can ease the exit of the player. Coming off a season where he scored 19 goals for Atlético Mineiro and earned call ups to the Argentine national team team, returning to European football would be the fulfillment of the desire of Lucas Pratto. He said: "What I want, personally, is to play in Europe. Everyone knows. But today I'm thinking of just resting. I want to stay with my daughter, with whom I haven't enjoyed for a long time. I have to digest the defeat because I was very excited to win a major title this year."
Pratto already had a spell in Europe, when he played for Italian side Genoa in 2011, but did not have much success. West Ham's bid is the strongest in the current window to take the striker away from Atletico-MG. Before the end of the season, Palmeiras and São Paulo had showed an interest in signing the Argentine. Exchanging Galo for a rival team would be a bit of a thankless task, Pratto says, but if the proposal is good for him and Atlético-MG, it would not be a problem. Pratto added: "It's hard for everyone to think that a player who is identified with a team will strengthen the rival, but that's what I said before. If the president comes and tells me 'Pratto, the proposal for us is very good.' and if the proposal is too good for me too, we'll sit down and talk. It always has to be a proposal, whether it's from abroad or from here in Brazil, which is good for the president of the club and it has to interest me."