With Andriy Yarmolenko out for the season, West Ham need to use the January transfer window to strengthen their squad.

The Hammers’ ranks have been heavily depleted by injuries. And missing Yarmolenko and Manuel Lanzini really limits the creative midfield options.

But the latest transfer links will surely have West Ham fans excited.

West Ham chase El Shaarawy

West Ham and Watford want Roma winger Stephan El Shaarawy. (Photo by Francesco Pecoraro/Getty Images)

West Ham are interested in signing Roma winger Stephan El Shaarawy.

According to reputable Italian journalist Nicolo Schira, West Ham and Watford are both keen on El Shaarawy.

But they face a battle to tempt him to England as the 26-year-old is happy at Roma.

He is set to open contract talks and could sign a new deal until 2022.

Nonetheless, West Ham could try to snap him up before he commits his future to Roma.

Who is El Shaarawy?

El Shaarawy, nicknamed “The Pharaoh” after his Egyptian father, was once considered to be one of the best young players around.

 

Now 26, he did not quite hit the heights expected of him but he is performing well in Serie A.

This season, the 23-cap Italy international has scored three goals and picked up two assists in 11 games for Roma.

Previously in his career, El Shaarawy has played for Genoa, Padova, AC Milan and Monaco.

Although his primary position is on the left wing, El Shaarawy is also comfortable playing on the right, in a number 10 role or even as a central striker.

What would he offer West Ham?

El Shaarawy is another player in the mould of Felipe Anderson, offering raw talent and plenty of skill.

If he can adapt to the Premier League, there is no reason why the Italian attacker cannot thrive at West Ham.

If West Ham could somehow pull this off, it would be a major coup. And El Shaarawy would be an excellent replacement for the injured Yarmolenko.

With a front three of Anderson, Marko Arnautovic and El Shaarawy, West Ham would have a strike force that most clubs would envy.

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