West Ham are interested in signing Arsenal striker Eddie Nketiah, but a move would not come until late in the window, according to journalist Pete O’Rourke.
The Lowdown: Nketiah out of favour at Arsenal
The 22-year-old has been hailed as ‘extraordinary’ by Gunners manager Mikel Arteta but he hasn’t been considered a key man in the Premier League at the Emirates this season.
Nketiah has only appeared in 38 minutes of action in the Premier League in 2021/22 to date, with his three starts all coming in the Carabao Cup.
However, he has been phenomenal in those cup showings, scoring five times in just 263 minutes on the pitch – a goal every 52.6 minutes. He has also boasted an incredible 4.7 shots per game in the cup, one of which was a sublime back-heel finish to complete a hat-trick vs Sunderland.
The young striker has been linked with a move to West Ham in the past and it appears as though a switch could still happen.
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The Latest: Journalist confirms West Ham’s interest
Speaking to Give Me Sport, O’Rourke claimed that the Hammers see Nketiah as a target, although there are other players higher on the list too:
“I’m sure he’s on the list at West Ham but I don’t think he’s a top target.
“He could be a cheap option late in the window if they don’t sign their other top targets. Arsenal will probably be looking to sell with his contract up in the summer.”
The Verdict: Long-term investment?
There is a risk element to signing Nketiah, considering he is yet to show that he can perform at a consistent level in the Premier League, scoring just five times in 41 appearances in the competition.
That being said, he is still only 22 and could arrive on a free transfer after his contract expires this summer or for a nominal fee this month, acting as a backup to Michail Antonio and hopefully maturing in the coming years into his replacement.
In truth, not signing Nketiah certainly wouldn’t be a blow for West Ham but there is sense behind taking a punt on him. His pace has been described as ‘blistering’ by Tony Cascarino, and he is England Under-21s’ all-time record goalscorer, so the ability is certainly there if he can find the consistency.
In other news, a reporter has shared some West Ham transfer news. Read more here.
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