Tottenham are scouring the transfer market for Jan Vertonghen’s replacement and have been linked with Brighton & Hove Albion’s Ben White, Beijing Guoan’s Kim Min-jae, Brighton’s Lewis Dunk, Sevilla’s Diego Carlos, Inter Milan’s Milan Skriniar, Schalke 04’s Ozan Kabak, Norwich City’s Ben Godfrey, Celtic’s Kristoffer Ajer and SC Freiburg’s Robin Koch.
One centre-back who should be on their radar this summer is West Ham United’s Issa Diop, but the 23-year-old won’t be cheap. Danny Rose, Serge Aurier, Juan Foyth and Cameron-Carter-Vickers could be sold to generate funds for new signings, but can we raise enough money to reach an agreement with West Ham?
Is Diop available?
It appears so. Kaveh Solhekol of Sky Sports News said on Monday that West Ham need to cash in on a number of players this summer and are willing to sell Diop for £45m. The Frenchman’s salary demands may be around £50k-per-week/£2.6m-a-year, so his wages wouldn’t break the bank.
Diop has made 73 appearances in all competitions since joining United for £22.5m from Toulouse in 2017, scoring five goals with one assist. He’s been a regular at the London Stadium and still has three more years remaining on his contract, but Diop has wanted out for a number of months.
West Ham have been resigned to mid-table mediocrity, so the 23-year-old can’t be blamed for having his head turned by sides that can promise Champions League or Europa League football.
Would he improve the squad?
Definitely. Diop is a towering presence at the back, is seldom beaten in a one-on-one, has great anticipation to read his opponent and is a fantastic shield to the goalkeeper.
As per WhoScored, the Frenchman has completed 78% of his 974 passes, won 79/119 aerial duels, had 5/7 successful dribbles, took 15 shots with 50% hitting the target, blocked 39 passes/crosses/shots, made 164 clearances, averaged a tackle (27) or interception (47) every 37 minutes and was only dribbled past once every 307 minutes.
Jose Mourinho isn’t short at the back with Toby Alderweireld, Davinson Sanchez, Japhet Tanganga, Eric Dier and Foyth at his disposal, but Diop would be an upgrade. Whether we can stump up the money to sign him is another story, however.