According to recent reports, West Ham United are plotting a move for PSV Eindhoven’s full-back Santiago Arias in the upcoming transfer window. After a devastating season that might have seen some timely performances helping the Hammers to escape the relegation, Slaven Bilic will be gearing up for yet another eventful transfer window this season.
The London club entered the transfer window last season in full throttle with a new stadium to play in and an improved Premier League stature to lure star players. It seemed like the historic club had finally arrived and would be challenging for the top four this season. However, things went south pretty fast with hardly any popular names coming to the club and the club’s European ambitions cut short in the qualifying games itself.
The club still managed to bring in some over-hyped stars just in time like Simone Zaza from Juventus and Sofiane Feghouli from Valencia, but they failed big time with the Croat manager falling back to the likes of Michail Antonio and Andy Carroll in rescuing the season.
The Hammers currently sit in the 13th position of the league table with five games to go before the season ends. The only realistic target remains finishing in the top half of the table, but with Southampton, Stoke City and Leicester vehemently racing for it, things don’t look too positive for West Ham.
Arias, as one of the initial targets, makes a lot of sense given the huge crisis Bilic has experienced on the right defensive flank. Bilic started the season with the option of experienced Alvaro Arbeloa and young Sam Byram as his right-back options. However, untimely injuries to both of them meant defensive midfielder Cheikhou Kouyate had to play out of position to fill that role.
After almost the entire season when Kouyate had finally got a chance to play in his preferred position, Byram has now not gotten himself suspended after seeing two yellows last game. Bilic won’t be making the same mistake again next season and Arias could be a good option.
Previously targeted by Premier League side Swansea City, Arias has been a regular for the Dutch side this season. His disciplined displays have slowly made him an established player for the side since moving from Sporting CP in 2013.
He has been quite impressive so far helping his team to stay among the top four in the league. He has also registered two assists from 25 outings and Bundesliga side Bayer Leverkusen are reportedly keeping tabs on him.
The 25-year-old Columbian international could be lured by the Premier League interest and with no other clubs vying for his signature, West Ham might just win the race. His contract runs till 2019 and he won’t come cheap for sure.
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