West Ham have landed the services of AC Milan's Antonio Nocerino on loan until the end of the season, the English club's official website have confirmed.
It comes at a crucial time for the Hammers, who have endured a terrible run of form that has seen them plummet to 18th in the table and a point adrift from safety.
While the arrival of Nocerino would appear to signify an increase in the overall quality of the side, Sam Allardyce will first need to get the Italian out of his own alarming slump.
As B/R Transfers Correspondent Allen Jiang remarked, Nocerino has recently "been to Milan what Kieron Dyer was to West Ham—a liability."
Nevertheless, the hope will be that Nocerino can once again thrive—but this time without the benefit of Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
Reaction on Twitter has been pretty standard—that's to say there have been as many remarks about the quality of Noecrino's beard as there have about his football:
I am delighted to welcome Italian international midfielder Antonio Nocerino to West Ham United. dg pic.twitter.com/1v9qVurbti— David Gold (@davidgold) January 25, 2014
Antonio Nocerino to West Ham feels like such a Football Manager signing— Abbey (@YeahMisterWhite) January 25, 2014
West Ham have signed Antonio Nocerino on loan, and with that the average quality of facial hair in the Premier League has increased tenfold.— Tom (@FourFourTom) January 25, 2014
Asking Nocerino to save West Ham's season is likely to prove too much for the midfielder to achieve in four months, especially given his recent standard of play.
It will be hoped that the 28-year-old can play off Carlton Cole and Andy Carroll in a similar manner to how he played with Ibrahimovic in his first year in Milan.
There he demonstrated a real knack for finding the net, which is exactly what West Ham need right now.