According to Chronicle, West Ham United are interested in the services of Isaac Hayden. The 24-year-old is one of two Newcastle United midfielders the Hammers are targeting, with the other being Jonjo Shelvey. Hayden handed in a transfer request to Newcastle earlier this summer. But, the club’s hierarchy are not willing to let go of their star midfielder. And it is believed that the Magpies could demand around £15 million for his services this summer.
What can Hayden add to the table?
Hayden’s remarkable form in the second half of the campaign was critical to Newcastle’s survival in the Premier League. After a slow start to the season, the midfielder ended up making 25 appearances for the Magpies, scoring one goal and providing four assists.
The 24-year-old is primarily a defensive midfielder, who can also provide the impetus going forward. He has notably averaged almost one key pass per game, and this ability to create chances allows him to operate as a deep-lying playmaker at times.
But mainly, Hayden is proficient in providing defensive cover for the backline. He is aerially strong, mainly due to his 1.86m frame while his aggression and willingness to win back possession for his team makes him a tailor-made fit for English football.
Hayden has averaged more tackles per game (2.9) than any other Newcastle player this season. Also, the 24-year-old has won over two headed duels per game, which is an impressive statistic for any midfielder.
And finally, what makes the Newcastle star such an accomplished defensive midfielder is that he is quite good at reading the game. His tally of 1.6 interceptions per game is only bettered by Fabian Schar in the team this campaign (at least 20 matches played).
Where does Hayden fit in at West Ham
West Ham should go all out in the pursuit of Hayden. The Newcastle midfielder has a defensive essence to his game that will make the Irons much more vigilant in the middle of the park. Furthermore, he will provide some much-needed insurance should someone like Declan Rice leaves the club this summer.
The 24-year-old could also offer Manuel Pellegrini with additional options in the midfield department. The Chilean has already struggled with injuries to his star players including Jack Wilshere, Carlos Sanchez, among many others. Hayden, to that end, will offer the ex-Man City boss a reliable alternative in midfield.
Most importantly, however, the addition of Hayden will help West Ham meet their ‘homegrown’ quota in the Premier League, which requires clubs to have at least eight homegrown players in their 25-man squad. And for a fee of just £15 million, it could be a smart piece of business from the Hammers’ perspective.
Stat courtesy: Whoscored
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