West Ham are now interested in signing Shakhtar Donetsk centre-back Mykola Matviyenko in the January Transfer window, according to The Athletic.
David Moyes desperately needs to bring a top-class central defender to the London Stadium next month.
Angelo Ogbonna is out for the season whilst Kurt Zouma will be out for at least another four-six weeks or so.
West Ham are flying high in fifth spot in the Premier League table at the moment and we are safely through to the last 16 of the Europa League.
Moyes must ensure that the Hammers are adequately equipped to navigate the second half of the season though. And signing a new centre-back in January will be pivotal to our chances of doing just that.
West Ham eyeing January Mykola Matviyenko swoop
The 25-year-old Shakhtar Donetsk centre-back is firmly on the Hammers’ radar ahead of the January transfer window according to a report from The Athletic.
Standing at 5ft 11in, Matviyenko isn’t the tallest of centre-backs. He is left-footed though and is very comfortable with the ball at his feet.
He possesses similar technique to Aaron Cresswell.
Matviyenko is an exceptional passer of the football. In four Champions League appearances for Shakhtar this season, the defender averaged 90 passes per game and recorded an incredibly impressive completion rate of 92.8 %. It was a similar story for Ukraine at EURO 2020. In five outings, he made an average of 77.8 passes per match with a 91.5% success rate (Who Scored).
Matviyenko is the kind of central defender who thrives when playing in a three. He can also operate at left-back which once again highlights his similarities with Cresswell.
The 47-capped Ukraine international won’t come cheap though.
Sky Sports reckon that Shakhtar Donetsk will demand around £30 million for Matviyenko in the January transfer window.
That’s a lot of money to be paying for someone who is totally unproven in the Premier League. Perhaps £20 million or so would be a fairer price to pay.
Whether Shakhtar would be willing to lower their demands for Matviyenko remains to be seen though.