Southampton have been offered the opportunity to sign Aaron Long, according to Sky Sports News.
West Ham tried to sign Long in the summer transfer window. Manuel Pellegrini was desperate to bring in a new central defender before the close of the window. But a late summer switch to West Ham fell through due to work permit issues.
However, this has now been resolved. The New York Red Bulls defender qualifies for a work permit to complete his switch to England. He has now been offered to Southampton.
The Saints have shipped a staggering total of 29 goals in 12 league matches this season. This includes a 9-0 loss at home to Leicester City recently. Long, available for his release clause of $6m (roughly £4.6m) could be their answer.
Should West Ham reignite interest in Long?
With Southampton now potentially in the race for Long, should West Ham rekindle their summer interest? With 20 goals conceded this season, West Ham’s defence has looked shaky.
But Long might not be the answer. The USA international has received mixed reviews for his patchy form this season. Moreover, he has no Premier League experience which would provide a challenge as he tries to settle in halfway through a season.
West Ham’s centre-back department comprises Issa Diop, Fabian Balbuena and Angelo Ogbonna. Goncalo Cardoso and Winston Reid are the back-up options.
While improvements could be made at the back, it is not clear that Long would be worth a £4.6m gamble in January. West Ham should let Southampton press ahead with this deal.