Out has gone James Collins, released controversially after a decade of loyal service, and in has come Issa Diop as his replacement. At 21, the French youth ace has already captained Toulouse in Ligue 1, been scouted by Barcelona and smashed West Ham’s transfer record.
The London club have paid £25 million for an elite defensive talent who will surely only get better in the years to come. But who will partner him at the back?
Winston Reid’s best years seem to be behind him with injuries taking their toll, while some would suggest that Declan Rice’s future lies at the base of the midfield. And ESPN is now reporting that West Ham want to sign Ahmed Hegazi from West Brom and could trigger his release clause, which stands at a bargain £10 million.
Hegazi was a rare bright spark as West Brom finished bottom of the Premier League last season and he has shone at the World Cup, too, despite Egypt losing all three of their group stage games.
Excellent in the air and an underrated passer of the ball, Hegazi looks like the perfect experienced foil for Diop at the heart of Manuel Pellegrini’s defence.
If the two played together, do not be expecting West Ham to top the ‘goals against’ column next season.