West Ham have completed the signing of Rennes defender Nayef Aguerd.
The Moroccan defender has signed a five-year contract with David Moyes’ Hammers, in a deal that will cost the east Londoners around £30m, including add-ons.
Aguerd is Moyes’ first foray into the transfer window, as West Ham plan to improve their squad ahead of a season that will see them combine Premier League improvement with a first Europa Conference League campaign.
“I was really excited when I heard about West Ham United’s interest,” said Aguerd. “When I heard about it, I knew I needed to go to the Premier League, because it’s a dream for every player.
“West Ham is a historic club. I saw a few of their games this year, and I saw the fans and the atmosphere were fantastic, with the bubbles! I talked with the manager and he showed me that he was very interested, so it was easy to choose to come to West Ham.”
“I am delighted to welcome Nayef to West Ham United,” Moyes added. “We have tracked his progress for some time and I’m very pleased that we have been able to complete the signing. He’s a great addition that will add to our defensive options.
“I have been really impressed with Nayef’s character and attitude during our discussions. He has a great desire to improve and be successful, and I am sure he will fit in very well to the environment we have at Rush Green.”
The 26-year-old arrived in London last week to complete his medical. One source told Sky Sports News that Newcastle also registered an interest in Aguerd, though the Magpies are also keen on Lille’s Sven Botman.
West Ham continue to work on a deal for PSG goalkeeper Alphonse Areola, who was on loan at the Hammers last season. They are expected to trigger the option to buy clause believed to be set at £11m – they have to buy Areola once personal terms are finalised.
It is thought two other clubs have shown an interest in Areola, but West Ham remain hopeful of getting a deal done.
French football expert Julien Laurens speaking on Sky Sports’ Transfer Talk podcast:
“I think it’s a great signing because he’s left-footed but it’s not just that, it’s a sweet left foot. He has a good technical ability for a centre-back which is quite rare.