Which of West Ham’s four remaining central defenders have had the best season so far?

After an impressive start to the campaign, West Ham’s much improved defence has been the focal point of our success so far this year.

Keeping seven clean sheets already and only conceding 28 goals in the Premier League, proves that David Moyes has sharpened the back four up this season.

Following Winston Reid’s loan move to Brentford on transfer deadline day, we now only have four recognised centre backs remaining.

Therefore we have ranked them based on their performances this season, as they continue to compete for a spot in the starting eleven…

4. Issa Diop 

So far this season Issa Diop has been the player to have featured the least, starting only three games in the Premier League and keeping zero clean sheets.

He has fallen out of favour under David Moyes and unfortunately for Diop, other centre backs have performed better.

Arguably he is the player that has the most raw talent. A couple of seasons ago he was one of our best central defenders and was valued at around £50m by some of Europe’s top clubs.

However, the 24-year-old needs to have better composure when playing and learn more discipline in defence. There is no doubt he has a future at West Ham, but he hasn’t been able to prove to Moyes why he should start this season.

3. Fabian Balbuena 

Our third best central defender this year is Fabian Balbuena. The 29-year-old Paraguayan was a regular in the starting XI at the start of the season but has since been dropped to the bench.

‘The General’ put in some emphatic displays at the start, for example during impressive wins against Wolves and Leicester City.

However since the festive period he has been replaced by the in-form Craig Dawson, and is now struggling to get back into the side.

Balbuena has been a great servant for the club and is brilliant back-up, but sometimes lacks that much-needed quality in order to compete at the top level.

2. Craig Dawson 

Our most surprising player of the season so far is undoubtedly 30-year-old Craig Dawson. The on-loan Watford defender has been a rock for the Hammers since coming into the side in December.

After struggling to find game time, he made good on his debut – putting in a Man of the Match performance against Southampton. Dawson then helped West Ham to four clean sheets in a row, and has kept his place in the team ever since.

Dawson shows passion, good work ethic and energy as if he was five years younger, and has even grabbed a few important goals for the club. He is most definitely West Ham’s cult hero this season.

1. Angelo Ogbonna 

Our best central defender so far is unquestionably Angelo Ogbonna. The Italian international has been a crucial part of our team ever since he arrived from Juventus in 2015.

He has started every Premier league game this season, keeping seven clean sheets and is certainly our number one choice in the centre back position.

The 6ft 2in brick wall has the second most clearances so far this season (98) and the most headed clearances in the Premier League (64), helping West Ham to dominate in the air this year.

Ogbonna has no doubt been a worthy servant for the club over the past few years, and hopefully we can keep him at West Ham for the foreseeable future.