Tottenham signing this fantastic 23-year-old West Ham star would be a superb long-term solution


Why Issa Diop would be an excellent signing for Tottenham 

According to Claret & Hugh (h/t Football London), Tottenham are weighing up a bid for out-of-favour West Ham centre-back Issa Diop in the January window.

As per the report, Spurs boss Jose Mourinho is keen to add another central defender to his ranks in the winter market. Tottenham had been heavily linked with a move for Milan Skriniar in the summer but were eventually priced out of a deal by Inter Milan. They did rope in Joe Rodon from Swansea City before the domestic deadline but the manager apparently wants more depth in his options at the heart of the defence. 

Diop started his professional career at French club Toulouse, where he tallied 95 appearances over three seasons. His burgeoning reputation as a quality young defender in Ligue 1 prompted West Ham to fork out a hefty £22million to offer him a route to the English capital back in the summer of 2018.

Issa Diop has been a regualr member of West Ham since his arrival (Getty Images)
Issa Diop has struggled for playtime at West Ham this season (Getty Images)

The 23-year-old featured regularly over the course of his first two seasons at the London Stadium, starting 64 times fixtures in the Premier League.

However, the Frenchman has suffered a significant fall from grace under David Moyes this term. Diop has been restricted to just 3 starts in the PL so far, with Fabian Balbuena, Angelo Ogbonna and loanee Craig Dawson all ahead of him in the pecking order. The centre-back’s diminished role at West Ham has cast doubts over his long-term future at the club, although he still has a contract until 2023. 

Putting things into perspective, Tottenham completing an audacious raid on their London rivals for Issa Diop could pay off handsomely for their long-term plans. The former France U-21 international showed glimpses of his quality during his first two seasons at West Ham and still has plenty of room for development at 23. 

Spurs aren’t really short of cover in the centre-back department. Eric Dier’s rejuvenation under Mourinho has seen the England international establish himself as one of the mainstays of the club’s backline alongside the vastly-experienced Toby Alderweireld. Davinson Sanchez has slipped drastically down the pecking order, with Mourinho only handing the error-prone Colombian just 5 league starts so far this season. 

Issa Diop (R) in action against Manchester United (Getty Images)
Issa Diop (R) in action against Manchester United (Getty Images)

However, with Alderweireld set to turn 32 in March and Rodon yet to establish himself in North London, Mourinho’s desire to add another centre-back certainly makes sense in footballing terms. That said, Diop could be a really useful addition to Tottenham’s backline as they prepare for a hectic second half of the season. 

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Issa Diop has shown that he has all the attributes to evolve into a top-quality centre-back. His quality and potential have never been called into question and adding a little more consistency could take his game to the next level. He might not be an outright upgrade on Tottenham’s centre-back options just yet but would represent good value for money and a long-term option.