Angelo Ogbonna had looked set to leave West Ham United this summer.

The experienced defender has once again been a key player for the Hammers this season despite spending much of it on the bench.

West Ham splashed nearly £30 million on a new central defensive pairing in the summer.

Manuel Pellegrini brought in brilliant young Issa Diop for a club record fee for a defender. Experienced Paraguayan international Fabian Balbuena was also brought in.

Photo by Warren Little Getty Images

Oggy, Oggy, Oggy

The pair forged an impressive partnership with their attributes complementing each other well.

But Ogbonna was needed when Balbuena picked up a knee injury and spent nearly three months out.

The former Juventus man has been linked with a return to Italy with both Roma and Bologna (Sky Sports Italia).

Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce Getty Images

Pellegrini chasing compatriot

That seemed to tally with speculation that Pellegrini wants to sign fellow Chilean Guillermo Maripan this summer.

Alaves are unlikely to field their star centre back in their remaining La Liga fixture as they don’t want to jeopardise his potential £21million move to West Ham (Marca).

 

The Chilean international has emerged as a top target for The Hammers as Pellegrini seeks to strengthen his backline.

As a result one would expect Ogbonna to leave.

Photo by Visionhaus Getty Images

‘See you next season’

But speaking on social media after West Ham’s final day win over Watford Ogbonna seemed to suggest he is staying.

“It was an intense year full of emotions, thanks to everyone for the support shown in the good times and in the most difficult moments,” Ogbonna wrote on Twitter on Sunday night.

“The season is over, but the future is yet to be written.

“See you next season COYI.”

Have something to tell us about this article?