Premier League • England

EXCLUSIVE: Fulham confident over Frenchman’s return with big West Ham implications

France and West Ham goalkeeper Alphonse Areola

Fulham are confident of re-signing Alphonse Areola from Paris Saint-Germain and have made him one of their summer transfer priorities, TEAMtalk has learned.

The French goalkeeper, capped three times by Les Blues, spent the 2020-21 campaign on loan with Fulham from PSG. He appeared in 36 of their 38 Premier League matches and put in some impressive performances, despite the Cottagers’ relegation.

Areola was allowed to leave PSG again in the summer as they sanctioned a loan move to West Ham.

The 29-year-old arrived to challenge Hammers number one Lukasz Fabianski but has been unable to usurp his team-mate.

Areola has spent most league matches on the bench. However, he generally gets the nod from David Moyes when it comes to Europa League fixtures.

As such, Areola could start when West Ham come up against Lyon in the first leg of their UEL quarter-final on Thursday night. And he will be looking to impress potential suitors.

Fulham want Alphonse Areola reunion

TEAMtalk understands PSG have told the shot-stopper he is free to leave the Parc des Princes this summer, putting Fulham on alert.

Areola is a fan favourite at Craven Cottage and Fulham are confident of taking him back there for at least another season.

Should a permanent deal fail, then PSG are also willing to loan Areola out for the remainder of his contract – which expires in 2023.

Alphonse Areola playing for Fulham

Cottagers boss Marco Silva already has Marek Rodak at his disposal. And the Slovakian has kept 11 clean sheets in 26 Championship outings this term.

But with Fulham preparing for life back in the top flight, Silva wants a top-class replacement in goal. And Areola is an ideal solution.

Competition for him will arise from West Ham, though. They included an option to buy when loaning Areola from PSG in July.

Fabianski is 36 years old and in the twilight years of his career, forcing West Ham to hunt for his successor.

Fulham and West Ham are also battling to sign German defender Timo Hubers, although four more English clubs join them in the race…

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