A David Moyes masterstroke could see his imminent first West Ham signing of the summer help seal a second big deal.
West Ham have reportedly been close to signing Rennes defender Nayef Aguerd for some time.
But the deal was cast into doubt when Newcastle emerged with an alleged 11th hour bid this week.
West Ham fans were relieved last night, though, when Sky Sports reporter Dharmesh Sheth revealed Aguerd was in London and expected to complete his medical assessments today to become Moyes’s first capture of what will be a busy summer.
“Aguerd has arrived in London,” Sheth said on Twitter.
“Second part of West Ham medical in next 24 hours ahead of finalising move.”
Aguerd is a fantastic left-footed centre-back who has been scouted extensively by Moyes and head or recruitment Rob Newman.
Aguerd’s talent is obvious for anyone that has seen him play or takes a look at his YouTube highlights reel.
His stats are seriously impressive too. According to Opta data, Aguerd has made the most forward passes of any outfield player in the top five European leagues since the start of the 2020-21 season!
Make no mistake it is a very shrewd bit of business for West Ham if and when they get the deal over the line this weekend.
But is there another layer of ingenuity behind the signing too?
A Moyes masterstroke that could see his imminent first West Ham signing of the summer help seal a second big deal.
Aguerd is a Moroccan international with 19 caps under his belt and an African Nations trophy in the cabinet,
But he is also good friends with his Morocco teammate and longstanding West Ham target Youssef En-Nesyri.
The Mirror’s Darren Lewis claimed this week that Moyes still wants En-Nesyri, who he tried to sign last summer.
“Moyes is also weighing up whether to go back in for Sevilla forward Youssef En-Nesyri after seeing a £27million bid rejected in January of last year.
“The Spanish club sought as much as £40million at the time. Moroccan international En-Nesyri, 25, had come off the back of a superb season, hitting 23 goals for his club at the time. Over the past campaign, however, Sevilla have seen El-Nesyri’s form dip massively with just five La Liga goals in 10 months. Injuries and Covid are believed to have contributed to the dip and Sevilla are understood to be ready to cash in on him.”
Aguerd is just a year older than En-Nesyri and the pair have become close over the years having been emerging talents playing higher up the Morocco age groups.
West Ham’s imminent first signing has also spent plenty of time with former Hammer Manuel Da Costa, who has been one of his defensive partners for Morocco. He would undoubtedly have had good things to say about the club itself and West Ham fans.
Getting Aguerd signed could help lure En-Nesyri to east London too.
We should not underestimate the influence that a close friend and international teammate joining you at a new club might have.
Just look at Tomas Soucek and Vladimir Coufal. Soucek came in and cleared the path for Coufal to join him. The pair were already close friends from their time at Slavia Prague and with their country. And it has been vital for them to have one another and their families together in east London.
Let’s hope that is the plan with Aguerd and En-Nesyri and it is great logic from the Hammers if so.
It could be one of Moyes’s biggest masterstrokes yet.