West Ham are set to do battle with London rivals Fulham for the signature of MLS and Philadelphia Union defender Kai Wagner.
According to the Daily Mail, West Ham are interested in signing Philadelphia Union left-back Kai Wagner. The defender has alerted the Hammers with his recent performances in the MLS. The youngster has played fourteen times in all competitions this season and even scored against Inter Miami, David Beckhams franchise side.
The level of performances that Wagner has produced has seen some people label him as one of the best left-backs in the MLS. The 23-year-old started his career in Germany and played for the development sides of FC Ausburg and FC Schalke 04. Still, it was at Würzburger Kickers where the defender started to play regular football.
After impressing in the third tier of German football, Wagner made the move across the Atlantic to Philidelphia Union. Since moving before the start of the previous season, the German has become a permanent fixture of the MLS side.
In the 2019/20 MLS season, Wagner played thirty games and assisted six goals. The defender also played his part in four of the Union’s clean sheets. This season has seen the team’s defence improve with Wagner; the Union have kept five clean sheets in the eleven MLS games that he has played in.
Wagner has also picked up two assists in the process of these games. The good performances have seen English clubs such as West Ham want to bring the defender back across the pond. The Hammers could do with another option in the position because of manager David Moyes’ new system.
Arthur Masuaku and Aaron Cresswell are both playing regularly at left-centre-back and left-wing-back. The duo are playing some of their best football in recent years, but should one of them pick up an injury it could derail the team’s defence.
Wagner has played at both left-back and left-midfield in his career. This utility would mean it would more than likely the German would be a back-up to Masuaku as the club has no one else with that skill set.
The Hammers, if they want to sign the six-foot-tall defender, will have to stump up a rumoured £3.5 million and convince the player to join them over Fulham. The fee should not be a stumbling block; however, there are also some Bundesliga clubs interested in the defender’s signature.