West Ham United manager David Moyes has vented his frustration after defender Jeremy Ngakia made a decision to leave the club.
The 19-year-old has opted against signing a temporary extension with the Hammers which would have seen him finish the current season with the club.
“We are really surprised and disappointed that Jeremy is not going to stay at West Ham,” the Hammers boss told the London Evening Standard.
“We like him a lot, we’ve given him his debut and I’m a manager who has done that many times in my career, including Wayne Rooney, Ross Barkley, Jordan Pickford and others.
“Jeremy is another one and I feel he is making a mistake choosing not to stay with us. We’ve trusted him in big games and everyone likes him at the club.
“I also feel it’s a kick in the teeth for the academy, because they have developed a player for the first team and he’s not going to stay. We’re also really disappointed with his decision not to stay beyond June 30.
Ngakia has gone on to make four appearances for the Hammers in the Premier League since being promoted to the first-team earlier this year.
He has viewed as a cover option to Ryan Fredericks and Pablo Zabaleta who is set to leave the club at the end of this season.
Ngakia’s decision is certainly surprising. He is a product of the Hammers youth development system and the fact that the club promoted him to the first-team recently indicates that he is viewed highly by the club’s setup.
The fact that he refused to sign an extension is an insult to the fans of the club.
Ngakia did show tremendous potential during the time that he played in the Premier League and the Hammers coaching staff will be frustrated that a talent whom they helped to develop into the player that he is today opted to turn his back on the club.
The news also means that Ben Johnson is likely to be Moyes cover option for the unconvincing Fredericks and the outbound Zabaleta.
If Johnson can impress when given chances, he can push for regular first-team action next season. The defensive area is one which the East London club will definitely have to strengthen and overhaul this summer.
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