West Ham making a summer swoop for this hugely experienced Brazilian star would be a brilliant move by Pellegrini

West Ham United opinion: Pellegrini should sign Rafael da Silva

According to a report from French outlet Foot01, West Ham are keen to bring Olympique Lyon’s right-back Rafael to the Olympic Stadium in the summer.

The former Manchester United full-back will be available for free in the summer once his current deal with Lyon ends and would be a decent fit under Manuel Pellegrini.

West Ham could potentially be without Pablo Zabaleta next season and the Hammers would need a replacement for the Argentine in the summer.

Rafael, with his previous experience in the Premier League, is on top of Pellegrini’s list and a move in the summer is highly likely if Lyon don’t offer him a new deal.

Rafael spent 7 years at Old Trafford and played 170 times for the Red Devils before making the switch to the Ligue 1 in 2015.

Image result for rafael da silva vs west ham

The Brazilian has played 116 games for the French outfit and would bring in huge amounts of experience to the Hammers’ backline and would be an ideal replacement for the hugely experienced Pablo Zabaleta.

One of Rafael’s biggest strengths over the years has been his ability to bomb forward and join the attack. The 28-year-old is fairly quick and possesses terrific crossing ability, which would be of massive help to West Ham in the summer.

Rafael would also provide a brilliant balance between the attack and the defence and would help out West Ham’s defence on the right-hand side. His ability to tackle will be a hugely valuable asset in the Premier League and his ability to deal with the physical side of the game will help him fit in easily.

Rafael will also provide huge competition to summer signing Ryan Fredericks and the race for the role of a first-choice will keep both full-backs at their best throughout the season.

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The Brazilian’s attacking prowess will give Pellegrini the option of playing him on the right wing and he would be able to do a fine job there too.

Rafael, in his 13 starts so far in all competitions, averages 2.3 tackles, 1.5 interceptions, and 1.7 clearances in all competitions. The Brazilian, despite his height, is a valuable asset in the air and averages an impressive 1.4 successful aerial duels so far this season. (WhoScored)

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Conclusion

West Ham can make an incredible addition to their squad by signing Rafael in the summer and his previous experience in the Premier League will be a massive asset. Rafael’s availability on a free transfer is also a huge bonus and he is a player they should prioritise in the summer.

Written by Shamanth Jayaram

24-year old Electrical engineer turned football writer, born and brought up in Bangalore.

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