Journalist Toby Cudworth has suggested that Filip Kostic’s potential arrival at West Ham United could point to a switch in formation.
With Rob Newman and his recruitment team actively seeking a left-back as a ‘long-term successor’ to Aaron Cresswell (The Times), Kostic is a name that has been mentioned by ExWHUemployee in the list of their potential targets.
In fact, the insider said on a recent episode of The West Ham Way podcast: “If we can’t get him [David Raum] over the line we will then also look at or if we can get a better deal look at Filip Kostic. He is also an option there.”
Hoffenheim’s David Raum was apparently seen as the first-choice target in that area, but he looks set for a move to RB Leipzig, with the Hammers now tabling an offer of more than €15m (£12.7m) for Kostic, and Cudworth is of the impression that a move could leave David Moyes with scope to tweak his setup.
Speaking on the 90min Talking Transfers podcast, he said: “I think West Ham are just having a look to see who’s around and Filip Kostic is a name who’s been on the radar for a little while.
“He was actually linked with Juventus earlier in the summer and then it looked like he was going to sign a new deal at Frankfurt, but West Ham are in talks to try and tie a deal up.
“The indication is that he would be interested in a move, but he’s primarily a left-wing back and a left-midfielder rather than a traditional left back, and that may indicate that David Moyes is considering a change of system – or at least wants the option to have a change of system.”
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He was part of the Eintracht Frankfurt side that knocked the Hammers out of the Europa League semi-finals on their way to winning the tournament and managed to score seven goals while also producing 15 assists in all competitions last season.
Moyes only flirted with a wing-back formation a handful of times last season, and considering the injury sustained to new signing Nayef Aguerd, it would leave a five-at-the-back system difficult to sustain, with a history of fitness problems surrounding Kurt Zouma, Craig Dawson now 32 and Angelo Ogbonna only recently returning from a serious knee injury at 34.