Southampton have recently been tipped to sign West Ham centre-back Issa Diop, and the Frenchman could be the ideal replacement for Jannik Vestergaard in Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side should the Denmark international leave St Mary’s this summer.
Southampton were linked with a move for the former Toulouse defender by Foot Mercato earlier this month, and former Saints player Carlton Palmer has now suggested that the 24-year-old could be an excellent addition to Hasenhuttl’s squad.
He told This Is Futbol: “I think that would be a good move. Again, Diop wants to play, he would play regular football at Southampton, and it would be a good move for both parties.”
Vestergaard has attracted a lot of interest this summer after an impressive campaign with Southampton, before playing a key role for Kasper Hjulmand’s Denmark side as they reached the semi-finals of the European Championship.
Roma currently look to be the main contenders to sign him, with Jose Mourinho clearly keen on the former Borussia Monchengladbach man as Spurs were also heavily linked before the 58-year-old was sacked at the north London club.
After a tricky start at Southampton, the 28-year-old is now one of the first names on the teamsheet for Hasenhuttl as his passing has drastically improved from previous seasons, whilst his 1.99m (6 foot 6) frame obviously makes him a threat in both boxes, evidenced by his three Premier League goals last season.
However, his current contract is set to expire at the end of next season, and with no extension on the horizon, it would perhaps not be a surprise to see him depart this summer, which suggests that a replacement needs to be brought in.
Diop may have lost his regular starting place in West Ham’s side last season, making just 18 appearances in the Premier League, but he is still only 24 and has emphasised in the past that he can be a top defender when he is on form.
After an impressive performance for the Hammers against Manchester United in 2018, Mourinho labelled the £16.2m-rated Diop a “monster“, which suggests that the Frenchman could replace the aerial therat offered by Vestergaard in this Southampton side.
Therefore, if a deal can be done with David Moyes’ side this summer and Vestergaard is sold, then Southampton should definitely be looking to bring in Diop as his replacement.