Saturday, January 28, 2023

West Ham United Eyeing A Move For This English Keeper: Good Fit For Moyes?

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Abhinab Ghosh
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.

In a recent report, The Sun mentioned that West Ham United are eyeing a move for West Bromwich Albion keeper Sam Johnstone. It is understood that the Hammers could face competition from Southampton and Tottenham Hotspur in pursuit of the Baggies custodian who has got less than 12 months remaining in his contract.

Johnstone’s Excellent Form At The Hawthorns 

The Preston-born talent has made an impressive start to this season and deserves credit for proving his worth as a commanding presence in goal for the West Midlands club. Johnstone has participated in ten matches for West Brom so far in this campaign, conceding seven goals and keeping four clean sheets in the process on all fronts.

The 28-year-old has been a consistent performer at the back, based on his average of 2.2 clearances and 9.4 long balls per game in the EFL Championship. The English goalie has often gone long when distributing the ball from inside his penalty area which explains why he has only completed 43.9% of his attempted passes in league football (stats via whoscored).

At 28, Johnstone is currently playing some of the best football of his playing career, so he could be a decent goalkeeping option for West Ham to pursue this winter. Furthermore, the Hammers can expect to land him on a cut-price fee in January when Johnstone will have only six months remaining in his contract at the Hawthorns.

West Ham United (Sam Johnstone)
ANDORRA LA VELLA, ANDORRA – OCTOBER 09: Sam Johnstone of England looks on during the warm up prior to the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifier match between Andorra and England at Estadi Nacional on October 09, 2021 in Andorra la Vella, Andorra. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
The 4th Official uses images provided by the following image agency: Getty Images ( Imago Images (

Is Johnstone A Good Fit For West Ham United?

Johnstone has proven his value as a safe pair of hands in between the sticks for the Baggies this season. He boasts decent reflexes that allow him to make some solid saves at the back. The English custodian can even sense the danger quickly and is not afraid to come out of his box to clear the danger when needed. He is a good handler of the ball as well but needs to work hard on improving his accuracy when passing the ball out from the back.

At the moment, West Ham can benefit from adding a fresh face to their goalkeeping department as Łukasz Fabiański is edging closer towards the end of his playing career. Johnstone will serve as an ideal replacement for the Polish keeper but could initially find game time hard to come by at the London Stadium due to the presence of Alphonse Areola who is playing on loan until the end of this campaign.

Even then, Johnstone will undoubtedly improve David Moyes’ squad depth which makes him a decent fit for the Hammers to consider during the January transfer window.

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