West Ham eye “superb” defender dreaming of England despite Napoli interest

    West Ham could hand incoming manager Julen Lopetegui the perfect start to his reign by landing an impressive new addition staight away when the transfer window opens, it has been reported.

    Changing of the guard at West Ham

    David Moyes’ long reign at West Ham came to an end with a whimper on Sunday as his side were comprehensively beaten by champions Manchester City on the final day of the Premier League season, a result which saw Pep Guardiola’s side lift the Premier League title in the process.

    Now, BBC have confirmed the worst kept secret at the club, that ex-Sevilla and Real Madrid boss Julen Lopetegui will be taking over from the Scot, with the deal set to be confirmed “later this week” in order to allow him to begin shaping the squad and experimenting across pre-season.

    Moyes’s second West Ham tenure



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    Moyes will not be the only one leaving the London Stadium, with Michail Antonio having potentially played his final game for the Hammers ahead of his contract expiring this summer, while Ben Johnson is also set to leave as a free agent amid widespread interest in the versatile 24-year-old.

    Veteran pair Aaron Cresswell and Angelo Ogbonna are also out of contract this summer, while decisions will have to be made on Lukas Fabianski, Danny Ings and Kurt Zouma, who will have just 12 months left to run on their contracts in east London.

    There will need to be plenty of new faces at the London Stadium, and now the club may well have just identified their first.

    Hammers eye up young defender

    Foot Mercato credit West Ham with an interest in RB Salzburg defender Oumar Solet, who is set to be on the move this summer. Under contract with the Austrian club until next summer, he is ready to leave in search of a new challenge, with the 24-year-old on the radar of a whole host of clubs across Europe including Bayern Munich and Napoli.

    He has previously been vocal in his desire to play in England, telling GOAL about his career ambitions: “To play for the best teams in the world, of course. To be an example for young players. I just want to show my skills to the whole world. Since the youngest age, I’ve been a fan of the Premier League, but from now on, I am really open about every top league.”

    Solet has drawn plenty of praise for his performances for Salzburg, with journalist Zach Lowry taking to X to dub him a “superb” defender after one particular performance against Sevilla in the Champions League.

    Now, Foot Mercato reveal that the Hammers have shown “strong interest” and “intend to take advantage” of his contract situation, which could see him leave for less than perhaps his market value would usually be.

    It remains to be seen whether West Ham can beat their rivals across Europe for the Frenchman, but the early signs suggest that Lopetegui’s arrival could bring with it some exciting new faces at the London Stadium this summer.

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