Kylian Mbappe has given West Ham star Alphonse Areola a huge World Cup chance for his first ever minutes on the biggest stage.

When David Moyes moved to make Areola’s move from PSG permanent in the summer many assumed he would succeed Lukasz Fabianski as West Ham’s number one.

The 6ft 5in French goalkeeper was brilliant on loan last season, starring as the West Ham’s number two on our memorable Europa League adventure.

At £10m, Areola was a bargain capture for the Hammers.

Manchester United v West Ham United - Premier League
Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images

Although Areola is clearly going to be West Ham’s long-term number one over the next five or six years, he is having to be patient with Lukasz Fabianski rarely putting a foot wrong.

Areola has also had to accept his place in the pecking order with France, playing back-up to Tottenham’s Hugo Lloris.

Not starting regular games for the Hammers pushed Areola down to third choice ‘keeper until Mike Maignan’s injury ruled him out of Qatar.

Areola was on the bench as France beat Denmark 2-1 on Saturday to become the first team to qualify for the last 16.

Kylian Mbappe gives West Ham star Alphonse Areola huge World Cup chance for first ever minutes on biggest stage

Kylian Mbappe has now given West Ham star Areola a huge World Cup chance for his first ever minutes on the biggest stage.

Two goals from superstar PSG striker Mbappe saw off Denmark and comes after his man of the match display in the 4-1 victory over Australia before that.

By qualifying with a game to spare Didier Deschamps is now expected to ring the changes and rest key players in the final group game against Tunisia – just as he did in the previous World Cup.

Areola was part of France’s World Cup winning squad in 2018. But back then Steve Mandanda – who was drafted into this World Cup squad as Maignan’s replacement – was Deschamps’ number two ‘keeper.

Photo by Cyril Marcilhacy/For The Washington Post via Getty Images

So when France qualified for the last 16 after just two games in 2018, Mandanda came in for Lloris for the last group game.

That means Areola could now be in line for his first ever World Cup finals appearance against Tunisia on Wednesday afternoon.

It will be great for West Ham to see the man who will be their number one for years to come playing his part in the journey to potentially lifting the famous trophy.

And should France go all the way then Areola would feel more involved than he did for the 2018 victory in Russia.

The West Ham man will owe his former club teammate Mbappe a big debt of gratitude if that is the case as he was the difference against the Danes.


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