Defender deals blow to Man Utd, Arsenal over future £65m transfer hopes

Date published: Tuesday 13th August 2019 4:35 - Samuel Bannister

Issa Diop has poured cold water on the idea of him leaving West Ham for a bigger club in future transfer windows.

The French player was one of several defenders linked with Manchester United and Arsenal this summer, as both clubs searched for solutions at centre-back – but the Premier League pair opted to sign Harry Maguire and David Luiz respectively instead.

Part of the reason for the duo cooling their interest in the 22-year-old was the hefty £65m asking price that West Ham had placed upon his shoulders.

However, there is still a chance that, if he continues to impress, the former Toulouse man may attract interest from bigger sides again in the future.

Nonetheless, Diop has confirmed he would be happy to stay at West Ham.

He told France Football: “West Ham, for me, it was not and is still not a springboard to go elsewhere.

“It’s the club where I want to try to become the best defender I can be, compared to my qualities.

“Whether technical, tactical, physical, I still have a large margin of progression.”

Diop made 33 Premier League appearances in his first season in England, scoring two goals as Manuel Pellegrini guided West Ham to a top half finish.

The defender has been capped at Under-21 level by France, but is still awaiting his senior international debut. However, he is hopeful of catching Didier Deschamps’ attention before next summer’s European Championships.

“It is the performance that I will make in the match that will determine if I have the level to play with Les Bleus,” he said.

“It’s up to me to work. That’s how I see things.

“All very good players go into the national team. Well, if I am very good, it will come if it should come. Obviously, it’s a goal, but the proof that I deserve to reach it, it’s me who must give it.”


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