West Ham Opinion: Mohamed Elneny would be a good fit for the Hammers
According to Egyptian outlet Ahly News (h/t Football London), West Ham are interested in signing Arsenal outcast Mohamed Elneny.
Elneny, 27, has found himself out-of-favour at the Emirates in recent times, with the Egyptian international only managing to make eight Premier League appearances for the club under Unai Emery last year.
However, things could be looking up for the defensive midfielder, as the player could be offered a way out of the north London club this summer.
West Ham are believed to be offering a £9m fee for Elneny, who needs a move away from the Emirates to kick-start his career, as it’s seemingly become quite stagnated in recent times.
The Hammers are in dire need of midfield reinforcements ahead of the new campaign. The likes of Jack Wilshere and Carlos Sanchez struggled to make an impact, spending a majority of the 2018/19 campaign on the sidelines.
That saw Declan Rice and Mark Noble constantly being picked in the middle of the park by Manuel Pellegrini.
But with Noble ageing, Pedro Obiang closing in on a transfer to Sassuolo and the likes of Wilshere and Sanchez unreliable, Pellegrini needs to bring in a couple of central midfielders inside two weeks. Rice is first-choice in the midfield but beyond that, their options look weak.
The Hammers do not seem to have any other player in their squad to perform Rice’s role anywhere near his standard.
With that in mind, Mohamed Elneny could exactly be the type of player West Ham need in their engine room. Its true Elneny has found it tough to adapt to the fast-paced nature of the Premier League but one must also keep in mind that the midfield enforcer has lacked any kind of rhythm and continuity at Arsenal, both under Arsene Wenger and Unai Emery.
With regular opportunities and backing, the 27-year-old could perform to the level everyone expected when he joined from FC Basel.
Elneny has built his game on being a robust tackler, someone who can break up the opposition’s play as well as recycle possession. He has plenty of quality and experience and could compete for a place in Pellegrini’s midfield.
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The Egypt international would also represent a straight upgrade on Obiang. With the Hammers having an array of creative and flair players, the idea of starting Rice and Elneny in central midfield should work well in Pellegrini’s preferred 4-2-3-1 system.
There is, of course, still time for West Ham to bring in a new midfielder and Elneny could be the real deal.