Photo by Gualter Fatia/Getty Images

Report: Goncalo Cardoso set for first-team role at West Ham

West Ham are on the brink of completing their latest summer signing. According to various media outlets – including Sky Sports – Goncalo Cardoso is on his way to London to finalise a move to West Ham.

The Hammers have agreed on a £2.75m transfer fee for the Boavista defender, who will join fellow Portuguese youngsters Xande Silva and Mesaque Dju in Claret and Blue.

But what role will he have at West Ham? The 18-year-old has played 15 times in the Portuguese top-flight for Boavista but this is a step up. According to Football.London, West Ham will use Cardoso in the first-team.

Rather than heading straight to the U23 squad – like Silva and Dju – Cardoso will join West Ham’s senior side for training. The Portugal U19 international will be given the chance to show why he should be West Ham’s fourth-choice central defender.


Route to the first-team for Goncalo Cardoso

(Photo by Gualter Fatia/Getty Images)

West Ham currently have four senior options at centre-back. Fabian Balbuena and Issa Diop are the two players Manuel Pellegrini prefers at centre-half with Angelo Ogbonna and Winston Reid providing cover.

Reid was injured for the entirety of last season and there are concerns over his fitness. This could open the door for Cardoso to become West Ham’s fourth-choice defender ahead of him.

Alternatively, Ogbonna could leave West Ham. There has been talk of this throughout the summer but the Italian seems content to be West Ham’s third-choice option.

Cardoso will be determined to impress Pellegrini and he is a highly-rated young player. And there could be an opportunity for him to feature in the cup and for the U23 side. If he impresses, then he could start to compete for a regular spot.

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