LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 27: Issa Diop of West Ham United in action during the Pre-Season Friendly match between West Ham United and Fulham at Craven Cottage on July 27, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Warren Little/Getty Images)

In a recent interview with France Football (translated by Manchester Evening News), West Ham United defender Issa Diop, who has been linked with a move to Manchester United in the recent past, has ruled out a departure from the London Stadium any time soon. The French centre-back revealed that he was not using the Hammers as a stepping stone and said (via France Football), “West Ham, for me, it was not and is still not a springboard to go elsewhere.

“It’s the club where I want to try to become the best defender I can be, compared to my qualities.

“Whether technical, tactical, physical, I still have a large margin of progression.”

Diop’s Nightmare Start To The 2019-20 Premier League Season

Diop enjoyed an impressive spell with the East London outfit in the previous campaign. However, things have not gone according to plan for him so far this season. The Frenchman was part of the Hammers backline that conceded five goals against Manchester City in the opening weekend of the Premier League.

Despite the heavy loss, there is no denying that his partnership with Fabian Balbuena at the heart of Manuel Pellegrini’s defence is getting better with each game. The 22-year-old had made one tackle, two interceptions and two clearances versus the Citizens on Saturday afternoon (stats via whoscored).

Diop has represented France at various youth levels and is currently a vital member of the French Under-21 squad, having made six appearances for them thus far. He is destined to have a bright career in English football so his latest words would be quite encouraging for the Hammers supporters.

What Are The French Defensive Ace’s Best Attributes?

Diop is a reliable presence inside his own half and tends to find a lot of joy when attempting to challenge for possession of the ball in a 50-50 battle. He is a powerhouse at the back and can command his own box with authority and conviction. The French centre-back has made a lot of essential interceptions for the Hammers and is aerially dominant at both ends of the field.

However, he doesn’t possess the skill set to pass the ball out from the back, which indicates that he might struggle to play football under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s tutelage at Old Trafford.

Diop’s Recent Revelation: Massive Blow For The Red Devils?

Recruiting a commanding centre-half like Diop would have undeniably bolstered Solskjaer’s defensive options at the Theatre of Dreams. However, the fact that the French Under-21 international wants to stay and improve his game at the London Stadium will be a huge blow for Man United and their chances of landing the defender in the coming years.

A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.