The game-changing £56m double transfer deal that could catapult West Ham forward under Julen Lopetegui

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
The Hammers are understood to be plotting a number of transfer swoops already

The Age of Moyes draws to a close. The Age of Lopetegui begins in earnest. While West Ham are still yet to formally announce Julen’s appointment in East London, the common consensus seems to be that his arrival is now inevitable, and that it will be the former Real Madrid and Spain manager who leads the Hammers into the 2024/25 campaign. Exciting times indeed.

And with the 57-year-old comes the prospect of reinvigoration. By no means are West Ham a spent force, but the latter days of David Moyes’ tenure began to feel a touch stale, and any opportunity to freshen up the dressing room at the London Stadium would presumably be appreciated.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

With that in mind, The Sun are already reporting that Lopetegui is eyeing a number of potential transfer targets. And in the time honoured tradition of incoming managerial appointments, they just so happen to play for another one of his old flames, Sevilla. According to the tabloid, the Spaniard is keen to bring in both striker Youssef En-Nesyri and defender Marcos Acuna before the end of the summer - although competition for both could be fierce.

In the case of Acuna, Aston Villa continue to be heavily linked with a potential swoop for the World Cup-winning full-back, and a fee in the region of £13 million has been repeatedly touted. From Sevilla’s perspective, with no European football to offer the Argentine and just a year left on his current contract, their hand may be forced somewhat into a sale over the coming weeks and months.

For the Hammers, the addition of a new left-back feels like a smart idea, especially given the looming expiration of Aaron Cresswell’s deal with the club, and it is hard to deny that replacing the 34-year-old with a player of Acuna’s quality would represent a notable statement of intent.

Likewise, any raid for En-Nesyri would set pulses racing in East London. It is no grand secret that West Ham are in the market for a new centre forward this summer. Michail Antonio is very much in the twilight of his career, Danny Ings is a largely anonymous presence at the London Stadium, and other options at the point of attack are painfully scarce.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The Moroccan is not exactly a shock link either. The Irons have been touted as admirers for quite some time, and the chances of him signing are only likely to increase now that his former mentor is at the helm. The understanding is that En-Nesyri is eager to try his luck in the Premier League as he enters the prime of his career, and while West Ham are very much on his trail, so are Tottenham Hotspur. A fee of around £42.6 million may be required to prise him away from Andalusia, however.

For a combined fee of around £55.6 million, therefore, West Ham could go a long way towards not only improving their squad, but also easing Lopetegui into his role with a couple of familiar and trusted faces. If the Hammers are serious about kicking on next season, this is the kind of business they need to be conducting.

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.