How West Ham could potentially line-up if they fulfil transfer wish list
Alphonse Areola has become West Ham United’s second signing in the summer transfer window after making the permanent switch from Paris Saint Germain.
The France international spent last season on loan at the London Stadium from the Parc des Princes, but the Hammers have signed the 29-year-old on a five-year contract, in a deal worth £7.75m, after David Moyes’ side trigged the buy option which was inserted in the loan deal.
Areola joins Nayef Aguerd who has already signed for the Irons this summer from fellow Ligue 1 side Rennes.
The Hammers spent £30m to sign the left-sided Moroccan defender and it looks like West Ham are intent on improving on last season’s seventh-place finish.
Moyes’ side also reached the Europa League semi-finals, but with European football to contend with again next season, in the form of the Conference League, the Hammers are looking to build a star-studded side that can challenge on all fronts.
With Areola and Aguerd likely to be just the start of Moyes’ summer business, TBR takes a look at how West Ham could line-up next season if they manage to land all of their desired targets.
How West Ham could line-up for next season
Despite being West Ham’s stopper in the Europa League last season, Areola only made one appearance in the Premier League.
His challenge will be to oust 37-year-old Polish stopper Lukasz Fabianksi and become the Hammers’ number one on all fronts.
After a difficult season which was hampered by injuries and a struggle for form, Moyes will be hoping that Vladimir Coufal can rediscover the impressive form he showcased when he first arrived in the Premier League.
Ever present and forever reliable Aaron Cresswell will occupy the left-back berth and will no doubt continue to be a constant outlet and threat when contributing to West Ham’s attacking phases of play.
Aguerd will probably partner Kurt Zouma in the heart of West Ham’s defence but Craig Dawson, who was rock solid at the back last year, may fancy his chances of retaining his place in Moyes’ first choice starting XI.
With ‘Mr West Ham’ Mark Noble hanging up his boots and a £150m asking price placed on his shoulders, the Irons’ new captain Declan Rice isn’t likely to be going anywhere anytime soon.
The box-to-box England midfielder has become accustomed to being partnered in a two-man midfield pivot with all-action Czech Republic star Tomas Soucek.
But with Moyes keen to land Rice’s international teammate James Ward-Prowse this summer, Soucek could find himself taking a backseat if West Ham sign the Southampton captain.
However, the dead ball specialist only signed a new five-year contract with his beloved Saints in August, so West Ham may struggle to lure the talented midfielder away from St Mary’s.
But with money seemingly available for Moyes this summer, Ward-Prowse could be tempted by a move to the capital with the Hammers keen on closing the gap further on the league’s top sides with a fruitful summer window.
After scoring 17 goals and providing 13 assists from 50 matches last season, Jarrod Bowen’s performances were rewarded with a call-up to the England side.
With the World Cup on the horizon, Bowen will know he’ll have to maintain his form to be assured of a place in Gareth Southgate’s 26-man squad.
With Michail Antonio being the Hammers’ only real out and out striker, Moyes seems keen to bring added depth and competition in the forward areas which will bring goals and competition for places to the West Ham side.
Jesse Lingard, who shone during his loan spell with West Ham during the second half of the 2020-21 campaign, could be signed on a free transfer following his release from Manchester United.
The attacking midfielder scored nine goals and laid on five assists from 16 Premier League games for the Hammers and the 29-year-old would be a quality addition.
Signing the England international on a free transfer could also free up funds for Moyes to utilise elsewhere and it seems the Scotsman has ambitious plans to revamp his forward line.
Armando Broja and Arnaut Danjuma may complete how West Ham could line-up next season. The pair have been linked with big-money moves this summer and it would be quite the statement of intent if the Hammers pull of these six signings.
West Ham are set to bid in the region of £30m for Chelsea striker Broja, according to Sky Sports, and the Albanian striker who spent last season on loan at Southampton scored nine goals across all competitions.
The 20-year-old could be joined by former Bournemouth man Arnaut Danjuma who has a release clause of just under £40m.
The Netherlands international scored 16 goals for Villarreal in his first season in Spain following his move from the Cherries.
The 25-year-old, who netted six goals in last season’s Champions League, would add pace, goals and creativity to what could be a formidable West Ham forward line.