David Moyes could be hit with a major transfer blow this summer, as West Ham look set to listen to offers for Czech Republic midfielder Tomáš Souček, with contract talks reaching a standstill.
That is according to @ExWHUemployee on Twitter who, in response to a question about the 27-year-old’s future, suggested that contract talks are not moving forward and they are willing to listen to offers.
The former Slavia Prague man still has two years remaining on his current deal, so the Irons might not feel forced into a sale just yet, but you would imagine they would ideally like to have the situation resolved in the next 12 months, with the midfielder’s value likely to dwindle down alongside his contract.
Should the Czech international depart in the summer, what potential positive and negative effects could the move have on the current set up at the London Stadium?
Massive gap to fill in midfield
Souček has formed an impressive partnership in the middle of the park with current England international Declan Rice for Moyes’ side this season, in a campaign where West Ham reached the semi-finals of the Europa League and finished seventh in the Premier League.
According to FBref, the 27-year-old has scored 15 Premier League goals in his last two seasons from midfield, showing how crucial he is in terms of popping up with important goals for the Irons.
Should Souček leave, Moyes would have a massive gap to fill in terms of creativity from midfield, with Rice only producing one goal this campaign compared to the Czech international’s five, according to the same stats provider.
He has also started almost all of the time he has been match fit for, starting 34 games out of 38 this season, suggesting that Moyes acknowledges his importance to the side judging by his team selections.
Souček’s arrival in January 2020 was the catalyst for West Ham to survive in the Premier League in the 2019/20 season, before back-to-back European places were achieved in the following two campaigns, and we think that is in large part down to Moyes’ well-balanced midfield duo.
A chance to buy a replacement?
Though they have a strong midfield pairing, West Ham’s depth in the middle of the park doesn’t really stretch beyond their two first-team regulars.
Mark Noble has retired now that we have reached the conclusion of the season, and loanee Alex Král is unlikely to stay beyond this season after an underwhelming loan spell.
Although they would be losing a solid option in Souček, Moyes may feel that he needs to add more depth to his midfield and the funds generated from his sale may be able to provide that, if GSB opens the chequebook to find a viable replacement.
The Irons have been linked with both Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and former loanee Jesse Lingard this summer in a bid to increase their squad depth, but they are two very capable players who you would imagine would have a shot at being first-team regulars should they arrive at the London Stadium.
The sale of Souček may make Moyes’ life easier in the sense that he could conceivably find a way to ensure both of these targets arrive at the club, knowing they are going to get a fair amount of playing time.
Could the sale of the Czech Republic captain create opportunities at West Ham for those on the market this summer? Only time will tell.
In other news, West Ham have stepped up their chase for Josh Brownhill…