Why West Ham must sign Chelsea outcast Victor Moses before transfer deadline day

West Ham Upton Park

West Ham United have been linked with a move for Chelsea’s Victor Moses.

According to a report in The Mirror, West Ham United have made an offer of £6 million for Chelsea winger Victor Moses as manager Slaven Bilic looks to strengthen his side before the transfer deadline.

The news of West Ham’s interest in Moses may not have been met with initial excitement by the club’s supporters, but his potential arrival could prove to be one of the most important deals of the summer.

The Hammers brought in a number of players during the off-season, with the arrival of Dimitri Payet from Marseille and Angelo Ogbonna from Juventus clearly capturing the imagination of the club's supporters.

Yet, one notable and key element regarding the influx of new players to East London is that none of them are wide players, with arguably the exception of Payet but his best role is through the middle.

With no wide players currently on the club’s books, Bilic has been forced to play with a narrow midfield consisting of Cheikhou Kouyate and Mark Noble alongside a defensive midfielder.

While this is an excellent tactic in stifling the opposition, shown during their superbly-executed opening day 2-0 victory at Arsenal, it leaves them completely vulnerable when the onus is on them to attack.

In their last two matches at Upton Park, West Ham have been convincingly beaten by Leicester City and Bournemouth with pacey wide men Riyad Mahrez, Jamie Varney and Max Gradel having a field day.

Playing a diamond or narrow midfield means that West Ham’s full-backs are vulnerable to being doubled up on, and it’s no coincidence that both Carl Jenkinson and Aaron Cresswell badly struggled against Bournemouth on Saturday.

Bilic needs reinforcements in regard to wide players, and Moses certainly fits the bill in terms of trickery, ball retention and a willingness to help out defensively.

  Key Passes per GameTake-ons per GameDef Duels Won per GameTackles per GameBall Recoveries per Game Appearances
Victor Moses 1.68 3.32 7.68 1.21 5.21 19
Mark Noble 0.67 1.33 7.33 1 6.33 3
Cheikhou Kouyaté 1 0.33 5.67 2 4.67 3

As per the table provided by Opta Stats, Moses’ statistics during his loan spell at Stoke City last season are favourable to the West Ham duo’s results from the current campaign.

The 24-year-old winger is undeniably more creative, but he also posted a higher average number of defensive duel winners and compare well in relation to tackles and ball recoveries.

The Hammers need competitive wide men to help deal with potential counterattacks, and an inability to bring someone in will prompt more results similar to their latest disappointing defeats.

Register for CHELSEA team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch