David Moyes plotting significant West Ham overhaul with new striker transfer priority

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David Moyes is plotting a summer of significant overhaul at the London Stadium despite another successful season for West Ham.

The Hammers reached the semi-final of the Europa League and secured a second straight season in Europe with a seventh-placed finish in the Premier League.

A thin squad struggled to cope with the demands of European football late on this term, however, and Moyes is desperate to improve both the depth and quality of his side as they target Europa Conference League success and the possibility of breaking into the top six next season.

A striker has been at the top of Moyes’ wish-list pretty much from the moment he returned for a second spell at the club in late 2019.

Sebastian Haller was sold to Ajax in January 2021 after an underwhelming spell at the club but the Hammers were unable to bring in a like-for-like replacement in that or either of the two subsequent windows.

Michail Antonio began this season in terrific form but tailed off badly, scoring five times in his first five Premier League appearances, but then only managing five more across the rest of the league campaign.

Moyes is desperate for both cover and quality competition in every position and with Andriy Yarmolenko – nominally Antonio’s deputy – having left the club, at least one addition is a must.

Moyes is keen to sign a left-sided centre-half and could look for further reinforcements in defence depending on outgoings, with a left-back rival for Aaron Cresswell also on the cards.

Central-midfield reinforcements are just as crucial as they are in attack, following the retirement of Mark Noble and the end of Alex Kral’s unsuccessful loan spell.

As well as a new centre-forward, Moyes could look at adding a left-sided forward in a bid to match the goals supplied from the right by Jarrod Bowen this term.

Alphonse Areola is expected to make his loan move from PSG permanent, leaving Moyes with a potential headache over who to make his No1. Should his wages prove a stumbling block, signing Nick Pope from relegated Burnley could be an alternative.

The club have held talks over Rennes centre-back Nayef Aguerd, while Nottingham Forest captain Joe Worrall is another option should the Championship side fail to win promotion in the Play-Off Final on Sunday.

The Hammers failed with a £50million bid for Kalvin Phillips in January and would have revived that interest had Leeds been relegated but the England international now seems destined for Manchester City. Southampton’s James Ward-Prowse has been linked and seems a more realistic target this summer, though he will not come cheap.

The Hammers are one of a number of Premier League clubs exploring the possibility of a move for soon-to-be free agent Jesse Lingard, with the Manchester United man having enjoyed a superb loan spell at the London Stadium.

A January move for Darwin Nunez also failed and the Benfica star now appears destined for a Champions League club, while Eddie Nketiah is set to stay at Arsenal.

Aston Villa forward Ollie Watkins and Everton’s Dominic Calvert-Lewin are among the strikers to have been linked with the Hammers but would each likely command huge fees.

Ryan Fredericks, Andriy Yarmolenko and David Martin have all left at the end of their contracts, while Noble has retired and Kral’s loan spell is over.

The Hammers will listen to offers for Issa Diop, Arthur Masuaku and Nikola Vlasic, who has been a huge disappointment since his arrival last summer.

There is also the possibility of Said Benrahma being allowed to leave, but that will be dependent on West Ham recouping a significant proportion of the fee they paid to Brentford two summers ago.

Crucially, the Hammers are adamant that Declan Rice is not for sale, with a £150m price-tag slapped on the England midfielder.

Source: Flashsport

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