According to a recent report from Calcio Mercato, West Ham have made a late summer move for midfielder Maxime Gonalons. The 29-year-old currently plays his football in Italy with Serie A giants Roma and has done so since leaving Lyon 12 months ago, although it appears that the former France international could well be headed to the Premier League this summer given Manuel Pellegrini’s West Ham have reportedly launched a bid.
And with the East London club likely seeking to replace Cheikhou Kouyate in the middle of the park following his move to Crystal Palace earlier this month, £6.75 million-rated Gonalons (as per Transfermarkt) appears to be the man to do just that.
Ultimately, while 28-year-old Kouyate perhaps wasn’t at his best for the Hammers last term, the lack of genuine alternatives in the central midfield department means that finding a replacement for the Senegal international is sure to be of importance to manager Pellegrini.
The Chilean has gone some way to bolstering his midfield ranks with the addition of Jack Wilshere, but a more defensive-minded midfielder appears to be needed to help the East London club move up the Premier League table this time round – Gonalons could be that man.
The 29-year-old came up through the ranks at French side Lyon and went on to play 334 times for the Ligue 1 heavyweights over an eight-year period, in which time the midfielder earned eight caps for France to underline his capabilities in the middle of the park.
Yet his move to Roma simply hasn’t worked out with Gonalons mustering just 16 Serie A appearances for the Italian giants last time round, although he possesses the sort of midfield qualities that could see him fill the void left by Kouyate’s departure, and thus provide West Ham with the central midfielder they need to allow the front players to perform.
Be it pressing intently off the ball and providing protection to the backline, or indeed getting on the ball and making searching passes from deep, Gonalons has ability both on and off the ball to serious aid the Hammers in their quest to move to the next level under Pellegrini this term.
Thus, the addition of the 29-year-old, were they to get a deal done before Thursday’s 5pm deadline, would without doubt be the perfect replacement for Kouyate in the heart of the West Ham midfield.
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