West Ham should be looking to replace Pablo Zabaleta as the Argentine nears the end of his career, and should target a move for Strasbourg’s impressively versatile Kenny Lala to be the heir to his throne at right-back.
The 27-year-old can play anywhere along the right flank, and to great effect. In Ligue 1 this season, Lala has played at right-back six times, on the right-wing five times, and as a wing-back six times, impressing massively and even notching goals against the likes of PSG and Monaco.
In those 17 appearances, Lala has hit three goals and recorded six assists, and appears to be a phenomenally well rounded player who can almost do it all.
Lala’s main attributes are his crossing ability, defensive contribution and ability to play key, defence splitting passes, whilst he is also a surprisingly good shooter from distance. The Frenchman is in the form of his life and deserves a big move as a result of his fine performances.
Zabaleta has been a good servant to the Hammers since arriving at the club in the summer of 2017, but at 33 years of age, is perhaps nearing the end of his time as a Premier League player. Manuel Pellegrini did look to sign an heir back in the summer in Ryan Fredericks, but the 26-year-old has suffered a few injuries and has struggled for game time.
The east London side had great success buying from Ligue 1 in the summer when they bought Issa Diop to the London Stadium, and they should definitely return to France again in January or in the summer to bring Lala to the club.
He is still a relatively unknown name in football, which means that West Ham could have a free run at his signature whilst he may not cost an earth-shattering amount either.