In a recent report, L’Equipe (subscription required) has revealed that West Ham United have already launched a €12m bid for Montpellier striker Gaetan Laborde. It is believed that the French outfit will be forced to sell off some of their star players during the January transfer window to cope with the financial difficulties brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic which could open the door for the Hammers to land him this winter (via L’Equipe).
Laborde’s Impressive Form In French Football This Season
The 26-year-old has made an impressive start to this campaign after putting in a series of eye-catching performances as the focal point of Michel Der Zakarian’s attack. He featured in 13 matches for Montpellier this term, finding the back of the net on three occasions while securing five assists in multiple competitions.
Laborde has performed at a high level based on his average of 2.8 shots, 1.2 key passes and 0.8 dribbles per 90 minutes in the Ligue 1. However, he has been sloppy when linking up play with others around him as he has made just 70.5% of his attempted passes in the French top-flight (stats via whoscored).
The five-time France Under-20 international has established himself as one of the top performers at the Stade de la Mosson. Therefore, the Hammers will do well to lure him to the London Stadium when the transfer window reopens at the start of next month.
What Will The French Forward Add To David Moyes’ Team?
Laborde is a deceptively quick marksman who can hurt the opposition by using his strength and leaping ability to outmuscle them inside the penalty box. He can hold the ball up for others around him and is a decent header of the ball as well.
The talented Frenchman is also highly versatile as he can function anywhere across the frontline. He primarily plays as a centre-forward but can also fill in as a wide player on either flank if needed. However, there are some concerns over whether Laborde can adapt to the high intensity of English football if Moyes can find a way to recruit him during this winter transfer period.
Is Laborde The Right Choice For The Hammers?
At the moment, Laborde seems like a decent choice for the East London outfit as he will add some healthy competition for Michail Antonio at the English capital. Plus, he would serve as an upgrade over Sebastien Haller who has been far from consistent as far as goal-scoring is concerned this season.
At 26, the Montpellier star is about to enter the prime years of his playing career. With all things considered, the Hammers should prioritise on getting a deal over the line to acquire the services of Laborde in January as he could potentially form a dangerous attacking partnership with Antonio and might even help West Ham compete for some major trophies in the years to come.