Craig Bellamy does not believe that Patrice Evra will prove to be a worthwhile signing for West Ham United.
The left-back signed for the East Londoners on a free transfer on Wednesday, three months after being sacked by Marseille.
However, former Hammers striker Bellamy, who spent 18 months at the club between 2007 and 2009, stated that the 36-year-old ‘isn’t the same player’ that he was at his peak.
“He hasn’t been the same player in the past four or five years,” the Welshman told Sky Sports’ The Debate.
“His last year at Juventus was really poor, and he isn’t the same player he was when he worked [under current Irons boss David Moyes] four years ago.
“Age catches up with you, and he’s in that position.
“It’s a great move for him and his experience will be great for a club like West Ham, but I don’t believe they’re going to get much out of him playing-wise.”
Evra was dismissed by Marseille in November following a confrontation with his own supporters before a Europa League tie against Portuguese side Vitoria.
Prior to that he had spent eight-and-a-half extraordinarily successful years with Manchester United and further added to his extensive trophy collection during a spell at Juventus.
Widely regarded as one of the leading players in his position throughout his prime, Evra will offer a winning mentality and vast experience but there are understandably questions over his ability to still compete at the highest level.
West Ham’s move for the veteran appears to be a reaction to Arthur Masuaku’s six-match ban, which he picked up for spitting at an opponent during a recent FA Cup clash with Wigan Athletic.
Although it is unlikely that Evra will start every game, his influence on the training ground would have been a major factor in bringing him in and it could turn out to be a shrewd piece of business if he helps the team retain their Premier League status.