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West Ham could replace Soucek with Conor Gallagher swoop

West Ham United have already completed seven major deals so far this summer –  with a move for Brazil international Lucas Paqueta also in the works  – although it looks as if more incomings could be secured before the window is over.

Recent reports have suggested that Chelsea midfielder Conor Gallagher – as well as Club Brugge playmaker Hans Vanaken – could still be plucked by the east Londoners before the window closes, with the club’s midfield ranks still in need of bolstering.

The Hammers are one of the Premier League clubs to have enquired about the 22-year-old’s availability this summer, with the England international potentially set to be valued at around £50m – or join on loan.

The Blues academy graduate has been integrated into the first-team fold for the first time this season under Thomas Tuchel at Stamford Bridge, although was notably sent off in the recent victory over Leicester City, with potential doubts over whether he will remain a key figure under the German moving forward.

That is largely due to the wealth of competition for a midfield starting berth at his current side, however, with the four-cap ace having more than proven his quality on loan at Crystal Palace last term, scoring eight goals and providing three assists in the top-flight during his stint at Selhurst Park.

Such form saw him lauded as a “special” talent by Eagles boss Patrick Vieira, with it no real surprise that there is such clamour for his attention this summer – including from Palace themselves.

His arrival at the London Stadium could well help to dislodge current regular Tomas Soucek, with the Czech Republic international having endured a difficult start to the new season for David Moyes’ side.

While he netted in the recent win over Viborg FF in the Europa Conference League qualifying clash on Thursday, the 27-year-old was labelled “awful” by broadcaster Tom Rennie following his display in the defeat to Brighton and Hove Albion two weeks ago.

With three defeats from their opening games, the Irons could well be in need of something of a shakeup, with thrusting a new face into the midfield alongside skipper Declan Rice likely to be a possible solution.

Would Conor Gallagher be a good signing for West Ham?





Despite doubts swirling about his future earlier this summer, Soucek has remained a regular starter under Moyes this season largely due to the lack of genuine competition, hence the need for Gallagher’s arrival.

The Englishman would no doubt offer a more relentless and “box-to-box” midfield presence, in the words of Zach Lowy, as he notably ranks in the top 6% for pressures made among those in his position across Europe’s top five leagues.

As such, the “pressing machine” – as described by Mark Duffy – ranks far higher than that of Soucek, with the 6 foot 4 brute ranking in just the bottom 10% for the same metric.

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Equally, Gallagher also ranks in the top 8% for dribbles completed, showcasing his ability to surge forward from deep, while the current West Ham man ranks in just the bottom 11% in that regard.

While the latter man offers a solid presence in front of the back four and an aerial threat in both boxes – ranking in the top 2% for aerial duels won – the £67k-per-week dud seemingly lacks the mobility to get around the pitch as impressively as that of the Chelsea gem, having also only netted five league goals and provided one assist last term.

As Moyes’ side look to take that next step after two solid seasons of progress, replacing the Czech giant for Gallagher could well be crucial to sparking that much-needed improvement.

Article title: West Ham could replace Soucek with Conor Gallagher swoop

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