Stoke City face a battle to keep hold of Harry Souttar, with West Ham among the Premier League clubs eyeing up a summer move for the talented defender.
Whilst it has been frustrating campaign for the Potters, as they have struggled to push for the play-offs, there have been some positives, with the emergence of Souttar one of those.
The 6ft 6″ centre-back has been a dominant presence at the back, as well as impressing with his composure on the ball.
Therefore, it’s no surprise to see the Express claim that the Hammers, along with Crystal Palace and Wolves, are keen. But, would he be a good addition to David Moyes’ side? Here our writers share their thoughts…
Do they really need another defender?
Souttar has impressed me with Stoke City, and I definitely think he’s more than capable of making the step up to the Premier League in the near future.
But I’m really not convinced that he’d get the regular game time that he’d be after with David Moyes and West Ham.
Moyes already has some strong options available to him this season, and I’m not convinced that he’d be getting in their starting XI. With Craig Dawson likely to sign permanently in the near future, it would be a poor move for all parties involved.
This would be a good signing I reckon.
Souttar has come on leaps and bounds since returning to Stoke after a good loan spell at Fleetwood and has showed that he can cope in the Championship.
To join a Premier League club like West Ham would be a big jump and a tough test, but I think he has the attributes to thrive in the top flight.
He’s good in the air, but is also very comfortable at playing out from the back and building attacks.
He’s at a good age, too, and I think he’d a good long term replacement for someone like Angelo Ogbonna.
I rate Souttar and he’s probably a signing that West Ham can afford to make given they’ve the assurance of Craig Dawson coming in elsewhere in the transfer window.
Dawson has been a revelation since signing, but he isn’t a long-term solution for the Hammers.
That’s where Souttar would be.
The 22-year-old has all the credentials to play in the Premier League, but like any young defender, would need to be afforded the time to adapt.
At the moment, West Ham can give him that, alongside some experienced heads to guide him along the way. In the long-term it would be shrewd.