West Ham have reportedly joined the clubs hoping to take RB Leipzig striker Hee-Chan Hwang on loan in the January transfer window.
Hammers boss David Moyes admitted he is “hopeful” of adding to his squad before the window closes. The East End outfit have been linked with many players and the latest is a man with 34 South Korea caps to his name.
Hwang, 24, was on the books of Austrian club RB Salzburg between 2015 and 2020. He made 126 appearances, scoring 45 goals while also spending time on loan with Austrian second-tie outfit FC Liefering.
He played 20 times while on loan with Bundesliga club Hamburg in 2018-2019. The Asian ace returned to Salzburg last term, bagging 16 goals from 40 appearances in all competitions.
It was enough to earn him a move to Red Bull Arena and a club challenging for the German title. Leipzig are second in the Bundesliga standings but Hwang has had little to do with their success.
He has played just 135 minutes of league football from seven substitute appearances. A loan move might suit all parties and Sky Sports Austria say the Hammers are ‘very hot’ candidates to sign him.
Other German clubs are also said to be keen and so there will be competition for his signature. He penned a five-year deal when joining last summer but is frustrated at a lack of action.
West Ham are known to be in the market for a new striker after the departure of Sebastien Haller earlier in January. He left for Ajax and the Londoners have been trying to lure Sevilla’s Youssel En-Nesyri to the London Stadium.
That appears to be a non-starter and so attention now turns to Hwang.
Hwang to cover all bases
With only a few appearances from the bench this term, Hwang will be raring to go. Should they get their man, Moyes will have a player who can operate up front or as a left attacking midfielder.
Nicknamed the ‘Bull’ in his homeland, he is not afraid to get his foot stuck in. He should therefore suit the Premier League and would ease the pressure on Michail Antonio.
Liverpool were said to be keen last summer but he opted to move to Germany rather than Anfield.
West Ham sit seventh in the Premier League table and face Crystal Palace on Tuesday night. Victory at Selhurst Park would take them above Liverpool and into fourth spot in the standings.
Moyes insists nobody is getting carried away with their lofty status, saying “we’re respectful for where we’ve come from”.
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