Why Nicolas N’Koulou would be a smart signing for West Ham
According to Italian publication Torinogranata (h/t The Express), West Ham are among a host of Premier League clubs interested in signing Torino defender Nicolas N’Koulou.
Nicolas N’Koulou, 29, joined Torino from Lyon in August 2017 and has since made 103 appearances for the Serie A side. He has shone at the heart of a three-man Torino backline, managing 26 appearances across all competitions this season.
However, Torino have lost six consecutive Serie A games of late that has seen them fall to 15th in the table, just two points above the relegation zone. The report (h/t The Express) adds Wolves, Everton and Bournemouth are also interested in N’Koulou, who could cost in the region of £15million.
Meanwhile, West Ham have endured one of their worst seasons in the Premier League and are at the risk of getting relegated to the Championship. They are currently 16th in the league table and doing everything possible to reach the magical 40-point mark as the campaign enters its business end.
The Hammers have been defensively awful, leaking a whopping 50 goals in just 29 games. Their problems at the back have been exposed throughout the campaign, with none of the defenders performing consistently, barring Angelo Ogbonna.
Issa Diop has failed to replicate his last season’s form, while Fabian Balbuena has been in awful form this season. Not to forget, Ogbonna will be 32 in May, whilst Winston Reid’s future remains uncertain, with him joining Sporting Kansas City on loan in January.
Irrespective of whether they stay in the Premier League or not, West Ham are in dire need of defensive reinforcements. Thus, the Londoners must make a move for Nicolas N’Koulou in the summer.
N’Koulou is a vastly experienced defender who has represented clubs like AS Monaco, Marseille, Lyon and Torino in his career. He has made 418 appearances in his club career, which speaks volumes about his experience. The 29-year-old has also represented the national team 75 times and was a part of the Cameroon squad that won the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations.
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The 29-year-old would undoubtedly strengthen West Ham’s defensive unit, whilst bringing depth to David Moyes’ squad. He has shown his ability to perform consistently for Torino since joining on a free transfer from Lyon and would be a useful addition to the Hammers if he is able to replicate the same form he has shown in Serie A.
N’Koulou would bring some much-needed competition for Ogbonna, Diop and Balbuena next season should a move to the London Stadium materialise. All in all, he could be a smart buy for West Ham ahead of the 2020/21 campaign.