By West Ham Zone speaking to Frank McAvennie

12th May, 2023 | 8:40am

We’re delighted to welcome former West Ham United striker Frank McAvennie as our exclusive columnist. Each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at the London Stadium

Frank McAvennie believes Alphonse Areola could be West Ham United’s number one goalkeeper next season if he helps the team win the Europa Conference League.

The France international joined the club on a long-term contract last summer in a £10m deal following a season-long loan deal last year, where he helped the club to the Europa League semi-final.

But he has once again been restricted to cup competitions with Lukasz Fabianski seen by David Moyes as the number one, and McAvennie believes that by winning the trophy he could elevate himself for next season.

“I don’t know to be honest with you until he gets a run of games,” he told West Ham Zone.

I think he’s decent. But you need a top, top keeper. Fabianski, don’t get me wrong he’s a good keeper, but a good keeper can get you eight or nine points in a season.

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“A good keeper can save you that and that can make all the difference.

“If they win the Conference League which isn’t beyond them, then he’s doing himself no harm.”

Areola has started every Europa Conference League game this season and also started two Premier League games while Fabianski was out injured with a fractured eye-socket and cheekbone.

The veteran Polish stopper is out of contract in June, although there is an option for a further 12 months that can be triggered.