Belfast Telegraph

Monk happy Bony a Swan

Swansea manager Garry Monk has suggested West Ham's failure to land his top goalscorer Wilfried Bony was a sign they did not want him enough.

West Ham manager Sam Allardyce revealed ahead of Sunday's Barclays Premier League meeting between the two clubs at Upton Park that the Hammers scouted Bony in 2013 when he was in prolific form at Dutch club Vitesse Arnhem.

But Allardyce said he passed up the opportunity as he made the loan signing of Andy Carroll from Liverpool into a permanent £15million transfer and the finances were not available to sign both strikers with other team strengthening required.

Ivory Coast international Bony has since scored 31 times for Swansea to draw admiring glances from some of the biggest clubs in England, while the injury-hit Carroll has netted just twice for West Ham in that time.

"It's the first I've heard of it, but if that's what they were doing they didn't really want him enough," Monk said responding to Allardyce's comment at his pre-match press conference.

"We obviously pursued Wilfried, he's committed to us, we're committed to him and the rest is history.

"I'm sure every club could say they were looking at this player or that player, but at the end of the day he's a Swansea player and we are very grateful for that. He's proving what a good signing he is.

"I'm not sure how far the (West Ham) discussions were down the line with Bony but for me they're two different types of players.

"They've got different strengths and they're two very good players, and I think you'll see in games this season what they can offer both teams."

Despite the far superior goals record of Bony - who Swansea signed for a club record £12million in the summer of 2013 - to England striker Carroll, Monk refused to be drawn into a debate about who is the better player.

"I don't look at who is the better player," Monk said.

"I look at what Wilf does for us and they will concentrate on what Andy Carroll does for them.

"We managed to sign Wilfried and we've done a lot of development with him as far as the team is concerned.

"He plays to our strengths, the team to play to his strengths and it obviously works for Wilfried and Swansea City."

Swansea's 2-0 home win over QPR in midweek took them into seventh spot, two places and two points worse off than West Ham, who have enjoyed back-to-back victories over Newcastle and West Brom in the past week.

"West Ham have done incredibly well, they've been up there from the very start and pushing all the way," Monk said.

"They're a very good team with good quality throughout their squad and I've watched a lot of them this season.

"Credit to the manager and club when you consider the noises coming out of there last season. Sam has done an exceptional job there.

"They have tweaked a few things and do possibly try to play a bit more football.

"But they can play direct as well with Andy Carroll and they've got a mixture of both."

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