Why Thomas Meunier could be a fantastic signing for West Ham
Back in February 2017, Thomas Meunier told Telefoot (h/t The Express) that he had rejected a move to the Premier League in favour of Paris Saint-Germain. One of the Premier League clubs interested in the right-back was West Ham. (h/t The Express)
Thomas Meunier, 28, joined Paris Saint-Germain from Club Brugge in the summer of 2016 and has gone on to make more than 100 appearances across all competitions. Since arriving at Parc Des Princes, the right-back has not been able to cement his place in the team.
The 28-year-old scored three goals and assisted three in his 22 league appearances last season. Given Meunier isn’t the first-choice at right-back under Thomas Tuchel and has entered the final year of his contract at PSG, West Ham must take advantage of the situation and attempt to sign him during the winter transfer window.
West Ham have lost all the momentum they built at the start of the season. They are currently struggling under Manuel Pellegrini, with no wins in their last six Premier League games. The Hammers have conceded 13 goals in their six games and the defence is one area Pellegrini should undoubtedly strengthen in January.
The partnership of Angelo Ogbonna and Issa Diop in central defence hasn’t worked, while Fabian Balbuena has looked out of sorts whenever he has played this season. That makes signing a central defender an absolute must. Barring a central defender, the Hammers must also add a new right-back to their ranks.
Pablo Zabaleta is an ageing full-back who is in the final year of his contract at the London Stadium, while Ryan Fredericks is defensively suspect. Moreover, the East Londoners sold Sam Byram to newly-promoted Norwich City in the summer. With that in mind, it would make perfect sense for West Ham to go back in the market for Thomas Meunier in January.
Meunier has got loads of experience at the highest level and while cutting the mustard in the Ligue 1 and the Premier League are two completely different things, one would back the Belgian to adapt pretty seamlessly to English football given his well-rounded attributes as a defender.
A seasoned campaigner in the Ligue 1 and in Europe, Meunier boasts a combination of attacking and defensive attributes required in a modern full-back.
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The former Club Brugge man can be a real asset to West Ham with his versatility, experience and international pedigree. Meunier is a quality full-back and would provide stiff competition for Fredericks, whilst being an upgrade over the ageing Zabaleta.
Meunier certainly has the CV to be a quality addition to West Ham’s backline and reigniting interest in the Belgium international could hand a massive boost to the club in their pursuit of a top-eight finish.