In Focus: Moyes must focus on strengthening the left and in central areas in January

According to reports in the Evening Standard, West Ham United are ready to back new manager David Moyes in the transfer market and give him funds to bring in at least two new signings – and possibly up to four – in order to keep the team away from the relegation zone.

What’s the word, then?

Well, the Evening Standard says that while the newly-appointed Moyes will be assessing his squad over the next few weeks, he is expected to utilise the January window and the number of players he brings could depend on how many go through the exit door.

The Evening Standard explains how former Irons boss Slaven Bilic was keen to sign Sporting Lisbon midfielder William Carvalho during the summer, but after that deal fell through in acrimonious circumstances it isn’t yet clear whether the club will return for the Portugal international.

Do they need up to four new players?

Considering they are in 18th position in the Premier League table and have put in some really poor performances against Liverpool, Brighton and Hove Albion and Newcastle United this season, you could certainly argue that they do.

The team and squad as a whole just hasn’t been good enough and Moyes will be looking for players that are willing to battle and work hard to keep the Irons away from the bottom three.

The Scot will need to assess his side first and see if they can improve them with coaching first before committing to four new signings though, and with many still away on international duty he won’t have made his mind up just yet.

Where do they need strengthening?

If the likes of Javier Hernandez, Andy Carroll, Diafra Sakho and Andre Ayew are fit and firing then you would expect that to be enough up top, and the same goes for Michail Antonio, Marko Arnautovic and Manuel Lanzini.

The weakest areas right now appear to be in central midfield, left-back and centre-back, and with Jose Fonte set to be out until February with a foot injury the latter could be the priority.

The likes of Mark Noble, Cheikhou Kouyate and Pedro Obiang have struggled in the middle of the park, meaning a move to resurrect the Carvalho deal is a distinct possibility.

Meanwhile, while the club will likely give Arnautovic longer to impress considering he is their club-record signing, a left-sided winger may also be targeted.