Premier League

West Ham: Vladimir Coufal in talks with Bayer Leverkusen

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West Ham United could be set to lose right-back Vladimir Coufal in the January transfer window, according to a new report.

The Lowdown: Out of favour

Coufal was brought to the London Stadium in October 2020 for an undisclosed fee, and he has gone on to make 86 first-team appearances for the club, notching 28 in the Premier League last season, establishing himself as an important player.

However, since the arrival of Thilo Kehrer in the summer, and with increased game time being given to Ben Johnson, the Czech has struggled for minutes, not starting since the 1-1 draw against Southampton in the middle of October.

The Latest: Leverkusen interest

According to a report from Sky Deutschland, Bayer Leverkusen are interested in a deal to bring the 30-year-old to the Bundesliga during the January transfer window, with a delegation set to be sent to London later this week to negotiate a fee.

However, the major sticking point in the deal will be whether the German side can meet West Ham’s demands, as he is still contracted until 2023, with the club retaining an option to extend this by two years.

The Verdict: Right time to go

Although the Czechia international has largely been solid for the Hammers, once being described as “excellent” by journalist Josh Bunting, the time is probably right for him to leave the club.

Johnson, at 22 years of age, represents a better long-term option for David Moyes, and he is already performing at a similar level to the Leverkusen target despite his tender years, picking up a 7.5 SofaScore match rating in the recent trip to FCSB, compared to a 6.9 attained by Coufal.

With Kehrer also versatile enough to fill in at right-back, allowing the stalwart to leave would be of no detriment to Moyes, and should allow him some funds to strengthen in other areas of the pitch.

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