Date: 27th March 2019 at 7:38am
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Foot Mercato reported earlier in March that West Ham were interested in Yohan Benalouane and were considering a move this summer, but Martin O’Neill shouldn’t be worried as it’s unlikely the Nottingham Forest defender will be stolen when the season comes to a close.

Benalouane has impressed since joining the Reds from Leicester City in January, making 10 Championship appearances and keeping three clean sheets. The 31-year-old has won 54 aerial duels (68%), made 59 clearances, 34 passes-per-game and averaged a tackle (8) or interception (26) every 26 minutes.

Vital Forest reported on Monday that Leeds United and Cardiff City were interested in Benalouane, but it’s hard to see West Ham making a move given the competition for places. The Londoners have Issa Diop, Fabian Balbuena, Angelo Ogbonna and Winston Reid at centre-back, so Benalouane would only be a target if they were offloading a defender this summer.

Forest are unlikely to accept any bid, the Tunisian international won’t want to join a side that can’t promise him regular first-team football. He left Leicester due to a lack of minutes, so why would Benalouane make the same mistake at West Ham? O’Neill shouldn’t have to worry about losing him to the Premier League outfit.

Crippy Cooke’s previous article

Opinion: Midfielder could leave Nottingham Forest this summer, club may trigger buying option

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