Why West Ham keeping hold of Issa Diop would be a right decision
Born in France, Diop started his journey with Balma SC before joining Toulouse’s youth system. He was promoted to the Ligue 1 outfit’s senior setup in December 2015 and had established himself in the heart of Toulouse’s defence, making 95 appearances for the first-team.
He was then signed by West Ham in the summer of 2018 and since then, he has been a regular member of the squad, helping them secure top-flight status in the last two campaigns. Diop has also represented France from the U16 to the U21 levels and also won the European Championship with the U19 squad in 2016.
Diop could be a future leader in West Ham’s defence
David Moyes’ side had another disappointing campaign as they dragged themselves to security in the top flight in the penultimate game of the season. And of the major reasons for their downfall is the lack of stability at the back.
At the moment, the Hammers have just three established centre-backs in their ranks. Diop and Angelo Ogbonna have been regular starters but they conceded 62 goals throughout the campaign. Fabian Balbuena is the other option in central defence but the Paraguayan made just 17 league appearances in 2019/20.
Moreover, Balbuena has struggled for form and fitness and is likely to leave this summer, as per The Sun. This would leave them with limited options at the back. Ogbonna is already 32 and is reaching the twilight of his career. Thus, keeping hold of Diop would be a wise decision by the club.
The youngster has already proven his worth for the Hammers despite their struggles. He has been a mainstay in the heart of their defence and at 23; he has a long future ahead of him. With experience, Diop can be the leader for West Ham in the future. He can take over from Ogbonna, once the Italian international steps down.
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With Balbuena set to leave and Ogbonna reaching the end of his career, Diop can be a key player for the Hammers in the future. Selling him would make it difficult for the Hammers to search for another centre-back, especially at this time of financial crisis. Thus, they should hold on to the Frenchman with a view of the future.