West Ham eye Nicolas N'Koulou as Reid replacement despite Arsenal interest

Upton Park

West Ham are reportedly eyeing up a January bid to sign Marseille defender Nicolas N'Koulou.

West Ham United's 3-1 win over Swansea City means that they now lie in fourth place in the Premier League table, with eight wins from 15 games - a remarkable turnaround from last season's poor 13th place finish.

Summer signings such as Carl Jenkinson, Aaron Cresswell, Alex Song, Cheikhou Kouyate, Diafra Sakho and Enner Valencia are all in top form, and have been key to the Hammers' amazing start to the season.

With the January transfer window fast approaching, many expect West Ham to add a few more players, particularly if centre back Winston Reid leaves the club.

The New Zealand international is out of contract in 2015, and top clubs such as Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester United have all been linked with moves to sign the 26-year-old on the cheap.

The Daily Mail report that, with contract negotiations stalling with Reid, West Ham are willing to accept a £6m offer in January - and could have lined up his replacement.

Recent speculation has suggested that Fulham's Dan Burn and Austrian international duo Aleksandar Dragovic and Martin Hinteregger are on Sam Allardyce's radar as he looks for a possible replacement, but this time it's Marseille's Nicolas N'Koulou being linked.

The 24-year-old Cameroonian is an international team mate of current Hammers star Song, and is known as being an athletic centre back and great tackler, but is a little on the short side at under 6ft tall.

With Marseille needing to raise funds through player sales, N'Koulou is believed to be on the chopping block alongside goalkeeper Steve Mandanda, winger Andre Ayew and centre forward Andre-Pierre Gignac, which led to reported interest from Arsenal this summer.

Signing N'Koulou would be something of a coup for West Ham, but that just shows the progress they are making right now under Allardyce.

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