West Ham United reportedly want to keep hold of goalkeeper Alphonse Areola beyond the terms of his current loan deal at the club.
The 29-year-old penned a season-long loan deal at the London Stadium in July last year. It was unclear whether he would be David Moyes’s number one or act as back-up to Lukasz Fabianski. The latter has transpired, with the France international starting just one Premier League game.
However, he has been the Scot’s go-to man in other competitions. The Parisian has played in seven of the Hammers eight Europa League fixtures this term, helping them into the quarter-finals.
And he featured in every minute of the East End outfit’s six matches across the FA Cup and EFL Cup. The Frenchman will be back in the land of his birth for their Europa League last-eight tie after West Ham were drawn against Lyon.
Areola is still on the books at Paris Saint-Germain. He came through the club’s youth setup before making his debut in 2013.
The shot-stopper made 27 appearances in 2016-2017, 43 the following season and 31 in 2018-2019. However, he has spent time on loan at many clubs during his career.
The man with three Les Bleus caps has enjoyed temporary stints at Lens, Bastia, Villarreal, Real Madrid and, last season, Fulham. And it seems as though he might spent next term on loan as well.
The rangy custodian has kept seven clean sheets in 2021-2022 and impressed during his limited opportunities. And it is thought Moyes wants him to remain at the club.
Areola seen as future number one
Fabianski is currently in his fourth season with West Ham. The former Poland international has made 129 appearances in all competitions, with 126 of those coming in the league.
However, the former Arsenal and Swansea City keeper will be 37 in May and cannot go on for ever. RMC Sport journalist Salim Baungally has now had his say on the veteran’s situation.
And it appears as though the capital club are keen to keep hold of Areola. And they hope he will become the club’s first-choice in the future.
“No one knows if he’s going to stay yet, but West Ham like him a lot,” he told Foot Mercato. “Fabianski is in front of him, but Areola will eventually start ahead of him. The goal is to have a goalkeeper for years to come.”
Moyes a big fan but Fabianski still top dog
The Hammers are enjoying another superb campaign. They sit sixth in the standings and are on track to match last season’s sixth-place finish.
That would mean another season of European football, although a top-four spot currently seems beyond them. Fabianski will be out of contract in the summer.
But a report in January suggested he will be offered a new deal. That remains to be seen but Moyes recently made it clear who will continue to get the nod.
“Lukasz has been the number one, Alphonse has played really well for us in the main,” he said. “He’s got a great record, not conceded too many goals so we’re really pleased with Alphonse but Lukasz is still number one.”