West Ham United Among Several Clubs Hoping To Land Ligue 1 Full-Back: Good Option For Moyes?

Marseille's Guinean midfielder Bouna Sarr (L) vies with Nimes' French midfielder Lucas Deaux (C) and Nimes' French forward Renaud Ripart (R) during the French L1 football match Nimes vs Olympique de Marseille, on February 28, 2020 at the Costieres stadium in Nimes. (Photo by PASCAL GUYOT/AFP via Getty Images)

According to a recent report by Foot Mercato, West Ham United are in the race to secure the signature of Olympique Marseille right-back Bouna Sarr. However, the same source has also stated that the Hammers will face fierce competition from Atletico Madrid and Sevilla in pursuit of the French defender.

Sarr’s Impressive Form In The French Top-Flight

Sarr has enjoyed a solid season at Marseille after putting in some memorable displays on the right side of André Villas-Boas’ defence so far. He has registered two goals and three assists in 32 appearances for the French outfit this term across all competitions. The fact that the Lyon-born defender has been involved in five goals during this campaign proves just how productive he can be going forward.

The 28-year-old has also averaged 2.2 tackles, 1.2 interceptions and 1.3 clearances in every 90 minutes of Ligue 1 football this season which showcases his growing influence on the defensive end of the field (stats via whoscored). He has emerged as a favourite among the Marseille fans based on his contributions down the right flank. However, it is still uncertain whether he can maintain such high standards if given a chance to compete in the Premier League, which is renowned for its competitiveness and physicality.

Sarr is a product of the FC Metz youth academy who is yet to taste football at the international level. He has been a late bloomer but could still catch the attention of France boss Didier Deschamps if he can perform at a high standard for a top club in England or Europe in the coming years.

Marseille’s Guinean midfielder Bouna Sarr (L) fights for the ball with Bordeaux’s Senegalese defender Youssouf Sabaly during the French L1 football match between Girondins de Bordeaux and Olympique de Marseille (OM) at the Matmut-Atlantique stadium in Bordeaux, southwestern France on February 2, 2020. (Photo by NICOLAS TUCAT/AFP via Getty Images)

What Are The French Full-Back’s Best Attributes?

Sarr can use his pace and agility to make some dangerous runs with the ball out on the wide areas. He excels at getting to the by-line after averaging nearly two dribbles per game in the top tier of France. The Frenchman is often tidy with his ball-distribution and has completed 84.7% of his attempted passes in league football this season (stats via whoscored). He has also transformed himself into a capable defender at the back, but there are some concerns over whether he will be able to cope with the high intensity of English football if West Ham can win the race to land him this summer.

Will Sarr Be A Decent Option For The Hammers?

David Moyes has currently got Pablo Zabaleta and Ryan Fredericks as his only right-back options at the London Stadium. However, the former is edging towards the twilight years of his playing career while the latter has missed a lot of matches this season. Hence, a promising full-back like Sarr could be a good option for Moyes to consider during the summer transfer period.

He will not only be an upgrade over Fredericks but also serve as a perfect replacement for the ageing Zabaleta, who has just over a year left on his West Ham contract. The French defender will provide some bite and steel to the Hammers backline and add another dimension to their attack as well. Therefore, Moyes should waste no time in orchestrating a move to bring Sarr to East London before the Spanish clubs get a chance to stake a claim on his services.

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.