With Angelo Ogbonna out for longer than first expected West Ham United’s forgotten man Fabian Balbuena may yet have a big role to play.
West Ham have looked solid all season as they continue to mount a surprise bid for Champions League football.
And that is despite having had to use a number of different centre back partnerships throughout what promises to be the club’s best season for 35 years.
Forgotten man Balbuena looks set to leave but could yet have a a big role to play after Ogbonna injury delay
Whether it has been Balbuena, Ogbonna, Craig Dawson, Issa Diop and even Aaron Cresswell.
At the moment Diop and Dawson are doing a fine job.
West Ham fans will be hoping that continues to be the case.
Balbuena has slipped down the pecking order but with Ogbonna out, he is now the next in line to come in should West Ham need him.
It seems the Paraguayan will leave the club when his contract expires in the summer.
According to Pedro Almeida, Balbuena has several offers and looks set to move back to Brazil, where he previously played for Corinthians.
January signing lined up to replace Balbuena next season
Claret & Hugh claim Moyes is already lining up January signing Frederik Alves Ibsen lined up as Balbuena’s replacement next term.
But the dependable ‘General’ may yet have a big part to play in West Ham qualifying for Europe.
Alves is untested at Premier League level but has been capped by Denmark.
And Moyes made it clear he was ‘one for the future’ when the signing was announced in January (whufc.com).
But talk is that the defender has impressed Moyes in training.
Moyes could do without having to spend precious transfer funds on a centre-back this summer
West Ham could do without having to sign a centre-back this summer.
Moyes will likely have limited funds and West Ham simply must sign at least one striker – if not two – and a central midfielder.
West Ham also have a number of promising young centre backs coming through the academy.
Jamal Baptiste are highly rated by both West Ham and England.
And both he and Aji Alese have been given their first team debuts this season by Moyes.