David Moyes should urge West Ham United to seal what Kevin Phillips has described as an “under the radar” transfer of Sheffield United midfielder John Lundstram this summer.
While speaking with Football Insider, former England international Phillips has claimed that the Irons can repeat their success of signing Craig Dawson if they make a move for the Blades’ soon-to-be free agent Lundstram.
The Hammers capitalised on Watford’s relegation to seal a season-long loan for Dawson in October which carries a £2m purchase clause, which will be triggered upon the centre-back’s next Premier League start.
Sheffield United are on course to face the drop to the second tier, with the Bramall Lanes natives rock bottom of the Premier League table and 14 points from safety with nine games to play.
Phillips believes it would be a wise move for Moyes to make, saying that he has the talent to make a similar impact at the London Stadium as seen from Dawson.
“He could be one of those signings like Dawson, going under the radar a little bit,” Phillips said. “Dawson has turned out to be an excellent signing and Lundstram could be exactly the same. Going there as a bit of back-up, but if you do well you can find yourself playing.
“Moyes knows what he wants. He doesn’t sign players if he doesn’t know they’re going to do the job. I was surprised when Dawson went there but Moyes knew about him. Lundstram could be a real shrewd signing if they get that one over the line.”
Moyes currently has a thin selection of midfield options at the London Stadium, with Declan Rice, Tomas Soucek and Mark Noble West Ham’s only senior players capable of naturally occupying a deep-lying role.
Moyes’ lack of options has left the Irons manager forced to rely on Rice and Soucek to play every minute of regular time in the Premier League this season, with Noble only awarded marginal opportunities with the second-least minutes by an outfield Hammers player so far.
Lundstram would be expected to provide the Scottish coach with a solid back-up choice and, as Phillips suggests, has the potential to challenge for a more regular role if Moyes decides to launch a move for the soon-to-be free agent.
The £6.5m-rated midfielder has provided two assists over 24 appearances, of which he has started 21, in the Premier League this season for a torrid Sheffield United side, including setting Oliver Burke up to score the winner away to Manchester United in January.
Former Leeds forward Noel Whelan has also lauded Lundstram as an “aggressive” and “robust” engine room occupant, who can add a bit of bite to the core of a side.
That’s replicated in the 27-year-old averaging one successful tackle and 0.8 clearances a game in the top flight this term, per SofaScore. That’s not enough to worry Rice (1.9 tackles, 1.2 clearances) or Soucek (2 tackles, 2.8 clearances) but enough to offer Moyes some trusted depth.
With his services set to hit the market for free and reports by The Athletic claiming that Lundstram will likely only chase a £40,000-per-week contract – the same as what West Ham pay Darren Randolph and Ryan Fredericks, per Spotrac – Moyes should be all over a deal.
AND in other news, a £70k-p/w dud with “wonderful feet” intends to quit West Ham this summer…