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West Ham: Angelo Ogbonna wanted by Lazio

West Ham United centre-back Angelo Ogbonna is already attracting interest ahead of the summer transfer window.

What’s the talk?

That’s according to a report by Italian media outlet Citta Celeste, who claimed that the Hammers defender has emerged as a target for Maurizio Sarri’s Lazio, who are hoping to land the 33-year-old on a free transfer upon the expiry of his current contract at the London Stadium in the summer.

Previous reports had claimed that, despite the former Italy international’s season-ending cruciate ligament injury, the Irons are planning on offering him a new one-year deal, although a move back to his homeland could well tempt the former Crotone, Torino and Juventus defender.

Should West Ham let Ogbonna leave this summer?

Yes

Yes

No

No

Disaster

While it is true that Ogbonna may not have too many years ahead of him in which he is capable of playing a starring role at the very highest level of the professional game, it is undeniable that the centre-back still has much to offer West Ham in the short-term. That leads us to believe that his departure this summer would be a disaster for David Moyes and his team.

Indeed, in recent years, the £1.8m-rated defender has proven himself to be one of the Hammers’ most important players in the top flight, earning seasonal SofaScore match ratings of 6.82 in 2019/20, 6.81 in 2020/21 and averaging a rating of 6.71 over his 11 Premier League appearances in the current campaign prior to his injury.

This form led to the £70k-per-week defender receiving some huge praise, with Declan Rice stating of the Italian in December 2020: “He’s so good. Honestly, he’s gone to another level this season. He looks like a real top, top centre-half and he’s stepped up when it’s really mattered.”

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West Ham podcaster Sam Delaney also praised the influence of the 33-year-old on the Irons’ backline in March of last year, stating: “The fact is he’s a real leader and he’s marshalled that defence whether we played in a four or a three. You can see him being vocal and he was so integral to it.”

As such, it is clear to see just how much of an impact Ogbonna has made in the heart of the West Ham defence, not only with his consistently solid performances but also with his leadership abilities. Moyes simply cannot afford to jettison such qualities in the summer, especially on a free transfer.

In other news – Forget Diop: West Ham liability with 40 touches must have just played his last game for Moyes

Article title: West Ham: Angelo Ogbonna wanted by Lazio

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