Is this West Ham coup the most mental deadline-day dealings ever?

When Alan Pardew signed Carlos Tevez and Javier Mascherano for West Ham…

More often than not, deadline days are underwhelming.

Take the deadline day back in January 2013, when the biggest signing of the day was a drastically overpriced Christopher Samba, who joined QPR for £12million.

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But sometimes, something so batshit mental happens that the whole world stops and scratches their heads.

Such a day happened 10 years ago today, when then-struggling West Ham managed to lure two future Premier League legends to Upton Park.

The whole thing looked like a bit of a mess at first. Two players, who were stalwarts of the Football Manager games, represented by ‘super agent’ Kia Joorabchian and tipped for greatness, rocked up at relegation candidates West Ham on deadline day in 2006.

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They both endured a rocky start in English football, with Mascherano playing little and Tevez struggling to find goals at first.

But both would go on to greatness.

After struggling for game time at West Ham, Mascherano bolstered Liverpool’s midfield alongside Xabi Alonso and Steven Gerrard. He’d win the Champions League with Barcelona and even captained his country at the World Cup.

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As for Tevez, he would rescue the Hammers from relegation before lifting Champions League and Premier League trophies with Manchester United. A controversial move to Manchester City would see him win another Premier League title before he moved to Juventus in 2013.

When they signed for West Ham, they were both 22 years old, and had previously been linked with Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea.

Under Pardew, Mascherano found himself kept out of a team that boasted the likes of Hayden Mullins, while Tevez couldn’t adapt to the playing style of the Premier League and the English culture, something he struggled with until departing Man City in 2013.

Pardew would eventually be sacked for his inability to draw the best from Tevez and Mascherano.

West Ham fans saw little of Mascherano that season, who was shipped out on loan to Liverpool after just seven appearances, but they saw the quality of Tevez, who proved his class in the club’s relegation run-in.

Tevez bagged seven goals in the club’s final 10 games, including the winner at Old Trafford on the final day, keeping the east London club afloat.

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But West Ham would eventually admit to breaching Premier League rules in signing the pair, and were fined £5.5m. Though the club were allowed to retain their top-flight status, much to the outrage of the relegated Sheffield United.

The duo’s arrival at Upton Park is the stuff of deadline-day folklore.

If you fancy a retro West Ham shirt, check out our marketplace here.

alexhorlock

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