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Paul Robinson predicts bad luck for West Ham in transfer race for EFL star amid Newcastle United interest



Former England international Paul Robinson believes Premier League side West Ham United will struggle to get a deal over the AFC Bournemouth centre-back Lloyd Kelly during the January transfer window, speaking to Football Insider.

The 23-year-old has been a regular starter for the Cherries this term, remaining above the likes of Wales international Chris Mepham and the experienced Steve Cook in the pecking order at the Vitality Stadium.

Managing to keep their concession tally to just one in their opening eight away league matches during the 2021/22 campaign, he was an integral part of that success as he formed a formidable partnership with Gary Cahill at the heart of defence.

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Kelly has also taken the captain’s armband from outcast Cook numerous times throughout the season so far, establishing himself as a real leader in the south-coast side’s dressing room and being missed heavily when absent.

Bournemouth have only been able to keep one clean sheet in the five games he’s missed so far this season, previously missing out with a quad injury in the late stages of November before testing positive for Covid-19 recently, not travelling with the squad for last night’s 1-0 victory against QPR.

His performances have generated considerable interest from the top flight with the Hammers and Eddie Howe’s Newcastle United both reported to be monitoring his current situation at the Vitality.

One man who believes it may be hard for David Moyes’ men to negotiate a deal though is pundit Robinson, who said to Football Insider: “I think he is (ready for the top flight). I have seen bits of him and he is a top defender.

“But Bournemouth are looking to get back into the Premier League.

“January is a difficult window. The money Bournemouth would get for him? I suspect the value of getting in the Premier League will be greater than selling a player in January.

“The Nat Phillips deal I can see happening. Liverpool, we know finances are not as affluent as other clubs.

“He is a player on the fringes, he has not got much game time this year, hardly any. But he is a top player who would fit the mould of what David Moyes would want.

“That is a deal I could definitely see going through in January.”

The Verdict:

It would be hard to see Parker’s side cash in on Kelly in January considering how valuable he is not just as a defender, but also as a leader and he could be crucial in his current side’s potential promotion back to the top tier.

Fellow central defender Cook’s likely departure also needs to be taken into consideration, because the south-coast outfit won’t want to be recruiting too many players mid-season, risking rocking the boat too much.

The centre-back position is a particularly delicate one because it will take time for new partnerships to be formed, so this is one reason why the Cherries should probably wait until the summer to reassess Kelly’s future and whether to cash in on him or not.

However, the combination of Newcastle boss Howe and the Magpies’ finances may be a game-changer, because the 23-year-old has already played under the Premier League side’s boss and they may be willing to submit an obscene offer for his services.

If a lucrative bid is submitted, then it must be considered by Bournemouth but they would have to pay well over the odds to persuade the second-tier club to sell at this stage.

A 21-year-old Reading FC fan and writer who graduated from the University for the Creative Arts in the summer with a degree in Journalism and Media Production. Other topics written about include politics, mental health and education.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Paul Robinson predicts bad luck for West Ham in transfer race for EFL star amid Newcastle United interest

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