With West Ham’s injury list growing by the day, manager Sam Allardyce has outlined the importance of the club securing one more quality signing before the transfer window slams shut on Monday.
The Hammers have already brought in Enner Valencia, Cheikhou Kouyate, Aaron Cresswell, Diego Poyet, Diafra Sakho and Carl Jenkinson on loan from Arsenal, but are keen to recruit another defender to bolster their back-line.
The Hammers have identified Cameroon international Jean-Armel Kana-Biyik as the next potential target, according to reports.
The Irons have not had the best of luck with injuries already in this early stage of the campaign.
Andy Carroll is out until November, Matt Jarvis has a thigh problem and captain Kevin Nolan is out for at least a month with a fractured shoulder.
While new boys Jenkinson and Sakho are also sidelined for the Hammers’ next match.
- West Ham weigh up move for Bundesliga star
- West Ham eye deal for Manchester City outcast
- Summer signing can shine for West Ham in Nolan's absence
James Collins is the latest addition to the treatment table and has left Allardyce with a minor selection headache for the future.
The defender is facing a spell out with a hamstring problem and has been forced to withdraw from the Wales squad for their opening Euro 2016 Qualifier away to Andorra on September 9.
This has left the Hammers short on numbers as they currently only have Winston Reid and James Tomkins available at centre-back for their upcoming Premier League match against Southampton on Saturday – a game in which Collins is set to miss through suspension, regardless of fitness.
In the market
Allardyce has confirmed publicly that West Ham have funds to bring in one more addition and is also welcoming the international break next week.
"We have the budget for one quality player and that's a possibility before the window shuts," he told reporters.
"I think that one more player in the squad and we'd have a good squad this year. Hopefully that's a very fit squad and a squad that produces results. I can't see anyone going the other way at the moment [though].
"Then we have an international window and that's good for us with the injury list. Hopefully some of the injured players recover for when we play Hull City [later this month]."
West Ham have been linked with a host of players this summer but recently it has been made clear that a defender is definitely in their midst with Micah Richards, Philipp Wollscheid and Toby Alderweireld being identified as possible targets.
However the latest name to emerge is Rennes defender Kana-Biyik, who is said to be training with the east London outfit and a realistic alternative for the Hammers.
Big Sam is desperate to bring in a defender to avoid the calamity of last season where they were embarrassingly short on numbers all over the pitch and it is clear, after a busy summer of spending, that defence is the only department they are left wanting.
The 25-year-old, Kana-Biyik, only has a year left on his current deal at Rennes and is thought to be keen on a switch to the Premier League club.