By Nick Ware

31st Oct, 2021 | 9:10am

West Ham want to sign Real Betis midfielder Guido Rodriguez

West Ham are battling Arsenal in the race to sign Real Betis midfielder Guido Rodriguez, according to Spanish news outlet Fichajes.

Rodriguez, 27, joined Betis from Mexican side Club America in 2020 and has since made 65 appearances for the La Liga outfit, including three in the Europa League this season.

The Argentine, capped 19 times by his country, is said to have “aroused the interest” of Premier League clubs with his performances.

West Ham are one of those, but they will have to offer a hefty fee for his services with the Real Betis board of directors all too aware of his importance to Manuel Pellegrini’s side, with a price of at least 30million Euros [£25.3million] on his head.

Arsenal appear to be West Ham’s biggest competitors for the 2021 Copa America winner, with Gunners boss Mikel Arteta likely to have made a direct request for Rodriguez, and the board have already made public their desire to sign him.

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Rodriguez certainly looks like a player that could thrive in the Premier League, combining technical qualities with his strong physique.

Standing at 6ft1in, the Argentine is unlikely to be perturbed by the hustle and bustle of the Premier League, and he appears ideally suited for a place in the West Ham midfield which already fields the giant talents of Tomas Soucek and Declan Rice.

Former Arsenal and Everton centre-forward Kevin Campbell, who works as a pundit for La Liga TV, waxed lyrical about his qualities in August.

He told Football Insider: “I’m a big fan of his.

“He is a very good player. He is a brilliant midfielder who is combative, good on the ball, can play and is mobile.”

With Mark Noble set to depart the Irons at the end of the 2021/22 campaign, David Moyes desperately needs to recruit another central midfielder, possibly two if Alex Kral’s loan deal is not made permanent.

Rodriguez could be an ideal signing to immediately challenge Soucek for a place in midfield, and he would arrive with Europa League experience.

In other West Ham news, Simon Jordan shared huge fears this week as major Irons news emerged on talkSPORT

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