West Ham United have landed a dream opportunity to sign SS Lazio goalkeeper Thomas Strakosha and seal their long-term heir to Lukasz Fabianski.
According to La Lazio Siamo Noi, Strakosha faces an uncertain future at the Stadio Olimpico after losing his place in Simone Inzaghi’s side to veteran shot-stopper Pepe Reina.
Strakosha is currently due to be out of contract in 2022 but talks over a new deal were put on hold due to the events of the season, after discussions were opened almost a year ago.
The Albanian goalie, for his part, would like to see his future resolved and understand to what degree Lazio still believe in him, otherwise, he will hand in a transfer request this summer.
Strakosha has told Sky Italia, via Cittaceleste, of his willingness to leave the side where he made a name for himself, too, with Bundesliga outfit Borussia Dortmund a potential destination.
“I am open to new challenges. Rome is like a second home for me, but the Bundesliga is a very interesting league. It could be a great step in my career. Borussia Dortmund? It is a great club with great ambitions. I’d be lying if I said I’m not interested,” he said.
West Ham have also been credited with an interest in Strakosha previously, with reports by Calciomercato claiming the Irons approached Lazio to discuss a deal during in the recent winter window.
Strakosha had lost the number one jersey earlier in the campaign, after testing positive for coronavirus and was later sidelined after developing a knee injury. Reina performed well as the stand-in for many games, but has suffered a recent drop off in form.
Inzaghi is now expected to make a change in goal for Friday night’s clash with FC Crotone after a string of impressive performances in training from Strakosha, in what will be a crucial period for the 25-year-old’s future at the Serie A side.
West Ham have been linked with a myriad of potential goalkeepers of late, with Manchester United’s Dean Henderson, Sheffield United’s Aaron Ramsdale and Leeds United’s Illan Meslier among those touted amid uncertainty about Fabianski’s future at the London Stadium.
That speculation may now end with the Irons announcing on Wednesday that Fabianski has signed a one-year contract extension to stay at the club until the summer of 2022, yet his new deal should not stop David Moyes from securing a long-term heir to the Poland international.
Fabianski’s long-term future remains a doubt with the shot-stopper turning 36 next month and with his new terms lasting only for a further 12-months, West Ham will be in the same boat next year.
That is unless they look to land his replacement this summer when Strakosha may be available, in a potential dream scenario for the Irons given Lazio valued the Albanian as highly as €40m (£34m) back in 2019 amid widespread interest.
It was thought the 25-year-old was being lined up as Hugo Lloris’ replacement at Tottenham Hotspur, and Spurs again showed an interest last summer alongside Leicester City. He also snubbed a €30m (£25.5m) move to Liverpool the year before when Jurgen Klopp eventually brought in Allison Becker for £67m.
Lazio’s current valuation would be expected to be significantly lower given Strakosha’s often understudy status when fit, with just six Serie A appearances to his name this term. And Moyes should still explore a deal, despite Fabianski’s new contract.