West Ham United’s squad depth has been brought sharply into focus with the realisation that the club could lose two key players in January.

Some West Ham fans are getting restless as the start of the season looms with goalkeeper Alphonse Areola the club’s only signing so far.

David Moyes clearly needs more reinforcements, particularly up front and in central defence.

Privately West Ham have made it clear that A) Moyes is fully in charge of transfers as he has been since his return to the club – with great success. And B) money IS available for signings.

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Pearce admits Hammers squad needs strengthening and time is ticking

Of course the Hammers still have 18 days to get deals done.

Yesterday assistant manager Stuart Pearce yesterday admitted the club had failed with a number of transfers ‘for one reason or another’. Pearce also conceded the squad is lacking in depth.

The Hammers assistant and manager Moyes have been waxing lyrical about Said Benrahma of late with the Algerian looking extremely sharp in pre-season.

But West Ham face losing Benrahma – and defender Issa Diop – for over a month between January and February to the delayed African Nations.

Reading v West Ham United - Pre-Season Friendly
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West Ham could lose Benrahma and Diop in January for over a month

The 24-team competition is due to take place between January 9th and February 6th 2022 and both Benrahma’s Algeria and Diop’s Morocco have qualified.

But squads will no doubt be required to meet up at least one or two weeks before. And returning players may well have to isolate depending on travel restrictions at the time.

It means West Ham – should both players be selected – will be without Benrahma and Diop for at least three to four Premier League games as well as an FA Cup fixture.

Reading v West Ham United - Pre-Season Friendly
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Potential absence of two key first team stars should focus a few minds with window closing in 18 days

As things stand the duo would miss Leeds at home, Manchester United away, Watford at home and likely Leicester away as well as an FA Cup clash.

Moyes and West Ham will be well aware of that. And the Hammers do have time to get reinforcements in before the window closes.

West Ham will also have the January window to use if needed at the time.

But it certainly gives some food for thought over the club’s squad depth and should focus a few minds going into the last couple of weeks of the window.

In other news, insider speaks out after new Milenkovic West Ham twist.

And Pearce admits Moyes has failed with transfer bids but remains optimistic.

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