West Ham tipped to trigger clause and sign Lukasz Fabianski replacement after £11m update - pundit
Alan Hutton has tipped Alphonse Areola to return to West Ham and fight Lukasz Fabianski for a starting role next season.
The former Aston Villa defender, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, insisted the 29-year-old has already proven he is “worth” the Irons re-signing him from PSG this summer.
As reported by the Athletic’s Roshane Thomas on Monday (21 March), West Ham have the option to sign Areola permanently or on loan again this summer.
The Irons reportedly agreed an £11million optional purchase fee with PSG, but also have the option to extend his temporary stay for another season.
Hutton insisted the shot-stopper’s “excellent” performances mean he looks likely to return to east London.
“He’s shown enough to prove that he’s worth it for them to trigger it,” Hutton told Football Insider’s Russell Edge.
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“Against Sevilla, he was excellent, he played really well. Probably a bit unlucky not be in goal against Tottenham.
“As it stands, Fabianski is number one but he’s proved he’s willing to fight for that position. I think you need to have two good goalkeepers.
That definitely helps, especially in such a tough league and when you’re fighting in other competitions.
“If they do manage to get him in during the summer, I think he will be fighting for the number one position. Fabianksi’s probably number one now but I think there’s an opportunity there for him.”
Areola has played 14 times for West Ham this term, with just one Premier League start under his belt.
He has featured in all but one of the Irons’ Europa League, League Cup and FA Cup games.