Reported West Ham target Guillermo Maripan has huge potential according to Alaves boss

Manuel Pellegrini  of West Ham United during Training at Rush Green on August 23, 2018 in Romford, England.

Deportivo Alaves defender Guillermo Maripan has been linked with La Liga champions Barcelona as well as Premier League West Ham United.

Guillermo Maripan of Deportivo Alaves celebrates scoring his team's opening goal during the La Liga match between Real Betis Balompie and Deportivo Alaves at Estadio Benito Villamarin on...

Deportivo Alaves have taken everyone by surprise in La Liga this season and coveted defender Guillermo Maripan has been central to their shock emerge as genuine Champions League contenders (The Mail).

The Chilean international is a rock at the back for the Babazorros with his combative style and willingness to put his body on the line catching the eye. Maripan has even piped up with a pair of goals and assists apiece at the other end of the pitch.

 

As a result, West Ham United are hoping to bring the 24-year-old to England, according to The Mail. La Segunda claims that they even had an £8.5 million bid rejected in January.

But considering that Maripan has been likened to Gerard Pique thanks to his ball-playing style, it is perhaps no surprise that Barcelona have also been mentioned as a potential destination.

Guillermo Maripan of Deportivo Alaves reacts during the La Liga match between Deportivo Alaves and RC Celta de Vigo at Estadio de Mendizorroza on February 23, 2019 in Vitoria-Gasteiz,...

According to Goal, the La Liga champions had expressed an interest in the so-called ‘new Pique’ two months ago. And Alaves coach Abelardo Fernandes was thrilled to see Maripan catch the eye of one of the continent’s genuine powerhouses.

"It's a compliment that teams like Barcelona are looking at a player like Guillermo,” said the former Sporting Gijon boss. "Guille is a very young player. He has a great capacity for growth and in recent games has grown tremendously. He's doing very well, he’s very reliable.”

With all due respect to Alaves, there is little they could do to stop Maripan from bidding farewell should a bigger club come calling.

And with Barcelona set to lose both Thomas Vermaelen and Jeison Murrillo in the summer, and with Samuel Umtiti continuing to struggle with injuries, West Ham could face some serious competition.

Guillermo Maripan of Deportivo Alaves celebrates scoring his team's opening goal during the La Liga match between Real Betis Balompie and Deportivo Alaves at Estadio Benito Villamarin on...

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