West Ham ramping up efforts to sign 26-year-old Ligue 1 defender

West Ham United’s first big piece of summer transfer business could come in the form of a new centre-back.

That’s according to a recent report from leading transfer expert and CaughtOffside columnist Fabrizio Romano, who has claimed the Hammers are ‘progressing’ in talks to sign defender Nayef Aguerd from Ligue 1 side Rennes.

MORE: Exclusive Fabrizio Romano column: Man United have De Jong plan, Spurs in talks for defender and Arsenal make Belgian midfield priority

We’re sure David Moyes would like to have this deal sorted before the end of the week as the Londoners look to do their business early.

Keen to avoid the same mistakes of the last couple of windows, which resulted in the club missing out on all their key targets, Moyes, as well as the side’s loyal fanbase, would feel a huge sense of relief if the side can bring in one of France’s most highly-rated centre-backs.

Nayef Aguerd in action for Rennes.

Discussing his future earlier in the year, as well as the Hammers’ reported failed attempt to sign him six months ago, the 26-year-old, who spoke to Ouest France, as quoted by TeamTALK, said: “I told myself I still had a year left to prove myself.

“When you’re a player, you’re under contract, it’s the club that chooses (whether you stay or go). They didn’t want me to leave, even if I had offers.

“They chose to extend (my contract) by showing me that I was important to the club, in the dressing room. I signed directly and showed that I was part of the project.”

Since joining Rennes from domestic rivals Dijon back in 2020, Aguerd, a fully-fledged senior international for Morocco, has gone on to feature in 80 matches, in all competitions, directly contributing to an impressive 11 goals along the way.

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West Ham ramping up efforts to sign 26-year-old Ligue 1 defender