Transfer Opinion: West Ham must beat rivals as transfer focus switches to £20m-rated playmaker

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It appears David Moyes will look to repeat the strategy which proved so effective in the second half of the season, which saw the Hammers bring Jarrod Bowen to the London Stadium from Hull City for £20m. The 23-year-old’s creative contribution proved to be vital in retaining West Ham’s Premier League status, as he played four assists in the last seven matches.

Even though the transfer window is only in its infancy, both Eberechi Eze and Said Benrahma have been linked with a move to East London, though it has been suggested West Ham will have to decide between the pair. Reports previously hinted that due to family ties between David Sullivan’s sons and Benrahma’s representatives, Unique Sports Management, the 24-year-old was the frontrunner.

However, it now appears Moyes has stepped up his pursuit of Eze and with Crystal Palace, Aston Villa and Newcastle United circling, the Hammers must act fast to become the frontrunners. A similar situation occurred in January with Bowen, as both the Eagles and the Magpies persued the Championship ace. Still, the Irons went all in and secured their target, even if it was on a lengthy five-and-a-half-year deal.

Despite Queens Park Rangers finishing in mid-table in the Championship, Eze was phenomenal in the second tier throughout the 2019/20 campaign. He set the standard for Mark Warburton’s side and earned himself an astronomical ten Man of the Match awards. The 22-year-old did not miss a match for the R’s starting all 46 games of the gruelling second-tier season, highlighting the midfielder’s exceptional fitness and consistency.

Furthermore, Eze made a telling contribution, scoring 14 goals from midfield, as well as providing eight assists. In total, his goals and assists helped QPR secure 36 Championship points, a remarkable figure which epitomises his importance to at the Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium. When combining goals and assists, the 22-year-old had a hand in 32 per cent of the R’s league strikes, almost a third, which is why he has been so highly rated this term.

QPR may have put a £20m price tag on Eze, but it has been suggested that given he is entering the final year of his contract, the 22-year-old may be available for considerably less. Moyes must go all in for the versatile midfielder to beat Premier League rivals to his signature and ensure the England U21 international’s development continues at the London Stadium.

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