Why West Ham should make a move for Roberto Gagliardini in January
Back in January, the Liverpool Echo had claimed that West Ham were interested in signing Inter Milan midfielder Roberto Gagliardini, but a move didn’t come to fruition.
Roberto Gagliardini, 25, has lost his place in the starting XI under new manager Antonio Conte. The arrivals of Nicolo Barella and Stefano Sensi in the summer has pushed him down the pecking order this season.
The Italian midfielder has played just 17 minutes this season, coming on as a substitute in Inter’s opening day 4-0 victory over Lecce.
As things stand, it’s unlikely to see Gagliardini get regular opportunities ahead of Barella, Sensi, Vecino and Brozovic in midfield. With that in mind, West Ham must make a move for him when the January transfer window opens.
It was surprising to see Manuel Pellegrini didn’t invest in a central midfielder after last season’s woes. Jack Wilshere and Carlos Sanchez are fit as of now but they have a bad injury record in the past. Plus, West Ham allowed Pedro Obiang to leave for Sassuolo in the summer without bringing in his replacement.
The Hammers are aiming to grab a place in Europe this season and for that to happen they’ll need to have more quality and depth in the squad, especially in the midfield.
While Pellegrini rightfully addressed his team’s attack in the summer, he must prioritise signing a central midfielder when the transfer window reopens in a few months’ time.
Roberto Gagliardini would be a brilliant fit at West Ham. Inter signed Gagliardini from Atalanta two years ago and he enjoyed a fine start to life in blue and black, impressing with his energy, tenacity and driving runs from the centre of the park. But his stock has fallen since the last season and currently finds himself way below down the pecking order.
A move to West Ham would certainly allow the 25-year-old to reignite his stuttering career. Gagliardini is a talented combative midfielder who excels in breaking up the play and recycling possession from the deep.
The Italian’s intelligence and ability to read the game coupled with his technical skills to pick a pass in the final third make him an all-action midfielder. In addition, he can also score from distance.
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Gagliardini is a better and more progressive passer than the ageing West Ham skipper Mark Noble. He will improve West Ham while in possession and would be the ideal partner for Declan Rice at the heart of Pellegrini’s midfield.
At 25, the Italy international is set to embark upon his peak years and if West Ham manages to sign him during the winter transfer window, they’ll be able to enjoy the midfield dynamo’s best footballing years.