As per recent reports, West Ham United are currently showing great interest in Marseille defender William Saliba. The Hammers could even be ready to spend up to €30m for the Frenchman’s signature.
The 20-year-old defender is looking to take an exit from Arsenal without making a senior debut for the club. The Gunners have already loaned him three times to Saint-Etienne, Nice and Marseille. However, after joining Marseille in 2021, the Frenchman has seen his form pick in a very short while.
As a result, several clubs have kept a close watch on the player. Negligence from Mikel Arteta to give the Frenchman a chance to play in England, have already hindered the player’s connection with the club. Hence, the player is now ready to leave the North London side permanently, with Marseille being his preferred choice, while David Moyes is also eager to acquire his services.
Can Saliba solve defensive troubles for West Ham?
The French defender is highly dominating in the backline. As a center-back, he has quite a lot of pace which aids him in catching up with the fast attackers. The player is solid on the ground and makes 1.6 tackles per game. A great passer who also has eagle eyes, Saliba loves to move the ball around and completes 93.3% of his attempted passes. (stats via WHOSCORED)
Having already made 29 appearances across all competitions for Marseille this season, the France international has truly flourished under Jorge Sampaoli. The manager has converted the player into a rock-solid defender, making his demand in the market justifiable.
As for the Premier League side West Ham, the defensive issues seem to keep them away from greatness. A shaky backline often concedes more goals than usual, resulting in just 5 clean sheets in 23 games in the competition. Consistent injuries have also not helped the case, with center-backs Angelo Ogbonna and Kurt Zouma sidelined for long. Ogbonna is set to miss another 7-8 months due to an ACL injury, while Zouma is out with a hamstring case. (stats via PREMIERLEAGUE)
What should be West Ham’s next move?
In the absence of Ogbonnna-Zouma, defenders Craig Dawson and Issa Diop have returned to the rescue. However, the Irons now have no proper CBs in case either of Dawson-Diop gets injured. Hence, signing a CB should be the priority of the club at the moment.
A silent January window have helped in saving funds to spend decently in the summer. An alleged fee of €30m can be offered to the Frenchman, should he choose to move out of France. However, a huge question still remains on whether Saliba will make the London Stadium his new home, or choose another destination.
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