West Ham United could be set to stand in the way of former French youth international center-back Issa Diop, after the 25-year-old was nearing a summer move to fellow capital outfit Fulham.
Per reports via RMC's Loïc Tanzi (cited here by Get French Football), Hammers boss David Moyes has halted negotiations between the London Stadium outfit and the returning Cottagers over the potential sale of Diop who is very much on the periphery of the first-team under the Scottish headmaster.
Fulham could certainly do with reinforcement in the heart of the defense under manager Marco Silva as the club look to beat the odds and avoid the drop during the upcoming 2022-23 Premier League campaign, with the Cottagers having just three center-backs on the books at the time of writing through Tosin Adarabioyo, Terence Kongolo, and veteran US international Tim Ream.
But despite now being fifth choice in the defense depth chart at West Ham, Moyes is standing between Diop and a much-needed exit from the London Stadium considering Kurt Zouma, Craig Dawson, and Angelo Ogbonna are all ahead of him in the pecking order.
That was compounded by the Hammers securing a deal for Moroccan international Nayef Aguerd earlier in the window, but Diop could also have a different escape route back to France through Olympique de Lyonnais after the Ligue 1 outfit also reportedly held talks with West Ham.
Such is the need for Fulham to strengthen at the back after securing deals for João Palhinha and Andreas Pereira from Sporting CP and Manchester United respectively, and the likelihood that Diop would be viewed as a first-choice option by Silva, that the Cottagers could well persist in the hopes that Moyes changes his stance in the near future.
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