West Ham United

West Ham United

Premier League • England

West Ham head the queue of Prem sides in unorthodox pursuit of goalkeeper David Ochoa

David Moyes after a West Ham win

West Ham are one of a number of sides looking to go down the unorthodox route of pursuing an MLS player, Real Salt Lake City goalkeeper David Ochoa.

Ochoa has appeared to be a rising star in the MLS of late. In his first proper season with Salt Lake, he played 25 games and kept five clean sheets.

The team were able to make it to the Western Conference playoffs. They won their first two games before being knocked out, with Ochoa keeping a clean sheet against Seattle Sounders in the first round.

He has garnered praise for his good performances in net, despite being just 21 years old. Furthermore, he has now been linked with a move away from America.

A number of teams across Europe are reported to hold an interest in the Mexican. Fox Sports reports that Atletico Madrid are keen, as well as Premier League sides West Ham, Fulham and Bournemouth.

West Ham’s goalkeeper situation is still unclear for next season. Lukasz Fabianski is out of contract in the summer, and is yet to put pen to paper on a new deal.

The Hammers are also yet to trigger the option they have to buy loanee Alphonse Areola. As such, a new goalkeeper coming into the club may be a smart move.

With Ochoa able to be taken in on a pre-contract agreement, a move should not be too hard for any side.

With that being said, though, the interest from a number of clubs could put a spanner in the works.

As such, West Ham may have a fight on their hands to land the MLS stopper in the summer.

Ochoa pursuit unorthodox for Premier League sides

David Ochoa, USA, June 2019.

The pursuit of an MLS player is unusual for a Premier League club. The most notable instance of a player switching America for England recently was Miguel Almiron to Newcastle United.

The Paraguayan was a genuine star for Atlanta United, notching 12 goals and 13 assists in 32 games the season prior to his move. At Newcastle, though, he has scored just 14 goals in 122 matches.

Indeed, Almiron has appeared out of his depth in the Premier League. The same may be true for Ochoa, should he make the switch to England.

However, there is every chance that he continues his good form. A move to a better league may not be all too different for a goalkeeper, in contrast to that of an outfielder, who quickly has to come to terms with the pace at a higher standard.

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