West Ham want to sign a top-class centre-back in the next transfer window, as revealed by Football Insider.
What’s the latest news on West Ham’s transfer plans?
The Hammers look set to be busy this summer, as they are planning to sign a senior striker to ease Michail Antonio’s workload, and they want to make Jesse Lingard’s loan deal a permanent one.
Now, it has been claimed that manager David Moyes wants to bolster his defensive options as well, with the club looking to bring in a high-quality central defender prior to next season.
How much are West Ham willing to spend on a centre-back?
An exact figure has not been placed on how much Moyes will be given to spend on improving his defence when the transfer window opens next month.
However, the report states that the Irons will be happy to pay “significant money” to land their ideal target, indicating that they will be willing to splash the cash to get the right player for this position this summer.
Who does Moyes currently have at his disposal at centre-back?
Moyes currently has four senior defenders to call upon, although this is likely to be narrowed down to three shortly as Fabian Balbuena’s contract expires in June.
Angelo Ogbonna and Craig Dawson are two other options, but both men are the wrong side of 30, and Ogbonna is out of contract in 2022.
Issa Diop is the final centre-back at Moyes’ disposal, and at 24, he ought to be entering his peak shortly. Moyes does not seem to have been completely convinced by him this year, though, having only played him on 18 occasions in the top-flight. The Frenchman did not start any of West Ham’s last three league games.
Did West Ham’s defence cost them a top four spot?
To put it bluntly – yes.
Heading into the final couple of months of the season, West Ham looked well-placed to finish in the top four which would have secured them a Champions League spot for 2021/22.
However, in their final 10 league matches, they kept just one clean sheet and conceded two or more goals four times.
They ultimately missed out on fourth place by two points and it is clear to see what their main problem was. Moyes’ men shipped 47 goals across the course of the campaign – that’s 11 more than Chelsea.
If West Ham have ambitions of breaking into the Champions League places next year, this is an issue that needs to be addressed by bringing in a dominant centre-back, as the final weeks of the season showed that the side are not strong enough in this area of the pitch at the moment.