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West Ham interested in soon-to-be free agent Rafael - report
Photo credit should read LOIC VENANCE/AFP/Getty Images

West Ham interested in soon-to-be free agent Rafael - report

West Ham are keen to sign Lyon right-back Rafael Da Silva on a free transfer this summer, according to the print edition of The Sun on Sunday via HITC Sport.

Manuel Pellegrini is eyeing summer reinforcements already and Lyon’s Rafael fits the bill. With his contract due to expire at the end of this season, he is a low-cost option at right-back.

Who is Rafael?

Rafael plays for Lyon in Ligue 1. (Photo by Matthew Ashton – AMA/Getty Images)

Former Manchester United defender Rafael is well-known to English football fans, having spent seven years at Old Trafford with his twin brother Fabio Da Silva.

After making his debut for the Red Devils in 2008, the twice-capped Brazil full-back went on to play 169 games for Man United.

With three Premier League winners’ medals to his name, Rafael enjoyed plenty of success at Man United before his 2015 move to France.

The 28-year-old has played over 100 games for Lyon but with his contract expiring in the summer, a return to England could be on the cards.

West Ham’s right-back situation

Pablo Zabaleta is out of contract this summer. (Photo credit: IAN KINGTON/AFP/Getty Images)

Rafael would help to solve a problem position at right-back. Ryan Fredericks and Pablo Zabaleta currently compete for the starting right-back role.

Fredericks has been impressive lately. But Zabaleta’s form has dipped and he is also out of contract at the end of this campaign.

Rafael could be seen as a replacement for Zabaleta, should the Hammers opt against renewing his deal.