The permanent signing of Alphonse Areola this week means that he should be considered West Ham’s number one shot-stopper in the Premier League this season.
West Ham United signed 29-year-old goalkeeper Alphonse Areola on a permanent transfer from Paris Saint-Germain, following the expiration of his loan deal with the Hammers.
The French international, who spent all of last season at West Ham, arrives for a fee of around £10.5 million (with add ons) on a five-year contract.
The shot-stopper was an excellent addition to the squad last season, largely playing in the club’s domestic and European cup competitions and helping the Hammers reach the semi-final of the Europa League.
It was anticipated that he would sign permanently for West Ham, and now fans will be ecstatic to see the keeper between the sticks again this season.
Now that he has signed permanently, the question on everyone’s mind is whether or not he will start ahead of current number one Lukasz Fabianski in the Premier League this season.
The 37-year-old has started all but one top-flight match for West Ham in the last campaign, but his years remaining as a professional goalkeeper are numbered and there are many calls for Areola to take his place as a starter.
It is difficult for manager David Moyes to replace the former Poland international with Areola due to him performing well for the Hammers last season, but the new signing may offer the squad more in the future.
We saw what Areola is capable of throughout last season after he kept eight clean sheets in 18 appearances, conceding just 15 goals in all competitions.
In comparison, Fabianski kept nine clean sheets in 38 matches in all competitions, conceding 50 goals in the process.
West Ham have another season in European competition on the horizon, and both ‘keepers will be very valuable to the squad.
However, David Moyes must strongly consider starting Areola in the league next season and his decision would make the team much stronger moving forward.