West Ham eyeing move for Chelsea left-back Ian Maatsen

Chelsea left-back Ian Maatsen has been linked with a move away from Stamford Bridge in recent months, with West Ham, Manchester City and Barcelona keen.

Ian Maatsen

Ian Maatsen, 21, has spent the majority of his development on loan at Championship clubs. He played a key role during Burnley’s promotion-winning campaign last term. The left-back registered four goals and six assists in 39 games, as Vincent Kompany’s Burnley won the Championship title.

As a result, the Clarets tried to sign the Dutchman in the summer transfer window permanently, and they had a bid accepted by Chelsea as well. However, Maatsen was not keen on a move as he wanted to establish to try to establish himself in Chelsea’s first team. As of now, the youngster is yet to start a Premier League game for the Blues, accumulating only 83 minutes across six league appearances.

Maatsen is into the final year of his Chelsea contract and the club are yet to tie him down to a contract extension, which means he will be eligible to sign pre-contract agreements with foreign clubs from January. West Ham are reportedly viewed as the frontrunners for Maatsen’s signature, with Barcelona and Man City also monitoring the player’s situation at Chelsea.

Ian Maatsen could be a smart long-term replacement for Aaron Cresswell

West Ham had a look at Ian Maatsen in the summer and could revive their interest in January amid doubts surrounding their left-back situation in the long term.

At 33, Aaron Cresswell is in the twilight years of his career and has already shown signs of slowing down. The Hammers must find a quality replacement for the ageing Cresswell as quickly as possible, with Emerson Palmieri the only other left-back option in the squad. In that regard, Maatsen could prove to be a smart long-term replacement for Cresswell.

The Dutchman, who can also operate as a wing-back and in an advanced wide-left position, would be a solid addition to the West Ham backline. He would add more quality and depth to the east London club’s left-back department, whilst being an ideal understudy to Emerson.

The 21-year-old would get regular game time to aid his development, and David Moyes’s West Ham might be able to offer him European football as well. The prospect of moving to a Premier League club where he’ll get opportunities to showcase his talent rather than spending time on the bench at Chelsea should appeal to Maatsen.

Chelsea have been working on a new deal for Maatsen to avoid losing him for free at the end of the campaign. But their failure to make any sort of progress on fresh terms despite talks with the player’s camp has handed West Ham a chance to test Chelsea’s resolve with a cheeky bid in January.

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