As we are just over a week away from the summer transfer window opening, I catch up with our man-in-the-know ExWHUemployee to discuss the current goings on at the club.
Ex another excellent season for us is now over, and I wanted to ask first of all how things are in terms of retaining our current group of players?
So firstly Mark I believe that both Ogbonna and Fabianski have signed one year extensions to their deals so will be with us again next season, which is great news. I am not sure why this hasn’t been formally announced but the club recently do like to keep renewals quiet.
Another player the club are keen to tie down to new deal is Bowen, however talks will commence in September once the transfer window is concluded. My understanding of that is that the club will then have a clear picture on the budget after the summer window.
A piece of news that was rather sad to see was Stuart Pearce leaving the club. Can you provide an update as to who the club will appoint to replace him?
Yes it was a shame to see Stuart depart, he’s getting married so I believe wants to spend time with the family. As of yet there has been no confirmation on his replacement, but the club certainly favours ex players.
Now Pearce of course was a more defensive minded coach for us, and I believe an early contender for the role is Steve Potts. He’s currently working with the academy nd personally I think would be a great choice. Once I know more on this I’ll provide an update.
One position we seem to have an interest in strengthening is left back, and recently were linked with Zinchenko of Man City. What can you tell us on this?
We are definitely very interested in Zinchenko however the player has made it clear he wants to play a midfield role rather than a defender. So it could be that would suit us well with him filling in at left back if need be.
We do hold a firm interest in some left back targets also, with Arthur Theate and Owen Wijndal both players the club are keen on.
Aaron Hickey is another I have mentioned previously, however at this stage the player is looking likely to be heading to Arsenal.
A player that seems close to joining Ex is Aguerd, as you’ve previously reported, can you provide an update and also what this would mean for Ogbonna?
Well like with any transfer you can’t ever be 100% until it’s officially announced but with Aguerd I’d be very surprised if he isn’t soon a West Ham player.
My sources have said he’s been in the country and pictured in the kit. This doesn’t mean for certain the player has signed as players have had photos with kits before and not signed but it is an indication we felt confident at that time.
With Ogbonna I do think this will mean a more limited role but let’s not forget last season with our injury issues at the back. With that in mind I am sure he’ll still play a very active role this season.
Ex what can you tell us about the younger players coming in and academy ones who could play a key role this season?
In terms of targets, Patrick Kelly of Coleraine is someone the club are very keen on. Now I believe he has a few options on the table but West Ham are definitely a front runner.
This is a huge summer for Conor Coventry who will be trying to prove to David Moyes he can make the step up to the first team now.
A lot of the coaches rate Coventry highly but Moyes is the one who needs more convincing. I think the fact he did so well on loan at MK Dons and with his recent Ireland U21 caps record, if not this season then it’ll be time to move on. So yes a big pre season for him.
Harrison Ashby is one I think the club have high hopes for this season, and I think that’s proven with them allowing Ryan Fredericks to leave.
Baptiste is a player we all know is very highly regarded at the club although I don’t think this season will be the one we see him make the step up just yet.
One thing I can say is that there are players in the U16’s and U17’s who are really impressing, so the next generation of players is certainly looking bright.
Ex finally I wanted to ask if you had a message for the West Ham fans as the transfer window is about to formally open next week.
Well Mark my message is to try and stay patient. We don’t yet know if it will be a success after being let down before but do try and relax as best as possible.
We do get linked with a lot of players, and people think I list everyone but in fact I spend more time denying rumours from others!
I’d say that if you want to keep up to date with accurate transfer news then the only place to do that is with The West Ham Way Patreon membership. Of course though if transfer news isn’t your thing then we offer so much more, including interviews with former players, Martin Allen podcast and now the return of Jimmy Walker too!