West Ham could need a new central midfielder with doubts over the futures of Tomas Soucek and Declan Rice.
Green Street Hammers writer James has spent the last two weeks looking at potential transfer targets for West Ham United. With the January window a couple of weeks away from opening, many teams are already preparing to sign and sell players in the hope of improving their squads.
Many of James’s targets are lesser-known than others, and some are obscure due to the leagues they play in. The January edition of Transfer Player Profiles begins with Morten Hjulmand, a Danish midfielder who plays for Lecce in Serie A. Clubs in Italy are already keeping an eye on him, with teams such as Inter Milan and Roma hoping to snatch him up by the end of next month.
Full Name: Morten Due Hjulmand
Honours: 1x Campianto Italiano di Serie B
Morten Hjulmand graduated from FC Copenhagen’s academy in 2018. Shortly after he had graduated, he moved to Austria to play for Admira Wacker. He spent two years in Austria and made 68 league appearances.
Hjulmand signed for Lecce in January 2021. The club was in the second tier at the time and was aiming to win promotion to the Italian top flight. He became a regular starter in the 2021/22 season and played 37 league games, developing himself as a hard-working player. Lecce won promotion to Serie A that same season.
He has represented Denmark at U18, U19, U20 and U21 level.
STYLE OF PLAY
Italian journalists have praised Hjulmand’s tenacious and possessive role in the midfield. He is used to play as a defensive midfielder, but moving to an Italian team allowed him to play in a more complex role. He is currently used as a mezzala, which allows him to drop deep in front of the back four to assist the transition of play.
He stays central to the ball when his team is out of possession. When the opposition attempts to play through the middle, Hjulmand forms an extra body in front of the central defence and helps to break up the attack. Although he is quick to react to his team losing possession and adds to a defensive formation, he is known for having a bad disciplinary record.