WHO Poll
Q: 2023/24 Hopes & aspirations for this season
a. As Champions of Europe there's no reason we shouldn't be pushing for a top 7 spot & a run in the Cups
24%
  
b. Last season was a trophy winning one and there's only one way to go after that, I expect a dull mid table bore fest of a season
17%
  
c. Buy some f***ing players or we're in a battle to stay up & that's as good as it gets
20%
  
d. Moyes out
37%
  
e. New season you say, woohoo time to get the new kit and wear it it to the pub for all the big games, the wags down there call me Mr West Ham
3%
  



Alan 1:02 Fri Apr 7
Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
BBC

Chelsea have contacted former manager and current Roma boss Jose Mourinho about returning for a third spell in charge at Stamford Bridge. (Relevo - in Spanish)

Mourinho has also received a 120m euros (£105m) offer to coach in Saudi Arabia for two years. (Corriere dello Sport - in Italian)

Chelsea are eyeing a summer move for Portugal and Benfica striker Goncalo Ramos, 21. (Football Insider)

Inter Milan want to tie Italy centre-back Alessandro Bastoni, 23, down to a new contract amid interest from Manchester City. (Calciomercato - in Italian)

Barcelona are confident they can sign Portugal full-back Joao Cancelo from Manchester City this summer. The 28-year-old is currently on loan at Bayern Munich. (Sport - in Spanish)

Manchester United have been in talks for weeks over signing Jeremie Frimpong from Bayer Leverkusen, who will want 50m euros (£43.9m) for the Dutch full-back, 22. (Bild - in German)

Barcelona and Bayern Munich have followed Manchester United in meeting with Frimpong's agent over a potential move from Bayer Leverkusen this summer. (Fabrizio Romano)

AC Milan have reached an agreement with Rafael Leao over a new contract for the Portugal forward, 23. (Relevo - in Spanish)

Arsenal have made West Ham's 24-year-old England midfielder Declan Rice their prime target this summer after cooling their interest in Leicester's Belgium midfielder Youri Tielemans,25. (Football London)

Arsenal could also make a summer move for Feyenoord's Turkey midfielder Orkun Kokcu, 22. (Express)

West Ham boss David Moyes will remain in charge for Saturday's game against Fulham despite Wednesday's 5-1 home defeat by Newcastle. (Sky Sports)

France forward Kylian Mbappe, 24, features prominently in Paris St-Germain's video to promote season-ticket renewals for 2023-24 but there is no mention of Argentina forward Lionel Messi, 35, or Brazil forward Neymar, 31. (Le Parisien - in French)


Austria midfielder Marcel Sabitzer, 29, would consider making his loan move from Bayern Munich to Manchester United a permanent deal. (Sky Sport)

Arsenal are stepping up their efforts to sign Switzerland midfielder Djibril Sow, 26, from Eintracht Frankfurt in the summer. (Mirror)

West Ham and England winger Jarrod Bowen, 26, is wanted by Newcastle. (Talksport)

Leeds United will look to sign on-loan United States midfielder Weston McKennie, 24, permanently from Juventus if they avoid relegation from the Premier League. (Calciomercato - in Italian)

Turkish club Altay SK say that Manchester City, Atletico Madrid and Sevilla have made offers for their Turkish defender Efe Sarikaya, 17. (Sport - in Spanish)

Valencia's Uruguay striker Edinson Cavani, 36, says he is not thinking about retiring. (AS - in Spanish)

Tottenham have taken Scottish defender Ben Brannan, 16, on trial from Kilmarnock before a potential move. (Football Insider)





Sky Paper Talk

DAILY MAIL

Ollie Watkins is in talks with Aston Villa over a new contract as his superb form in front of goal has the club dreaming of European football.

Christian Eriksen has returned to first-team training after being out injured since late January.

Bayern Munich loanee Joao Cancelo admitted he doesn't have a 'very simple personality' as he reassured fans of the Bundesliga giants that they could still 'count on' the Portuguese defender despite an uneven start in Germany.

Tottenham's club record signing Tanguy Ndombele has claimed he had 'no choice' but to leave after being told he had fallen down the pecking order by former boss Antonio Conte.

DAILY TELEGRAPH

Liverpool midfielder Thiago Alcantara is ready to make his comeback for this weekend's visit of Arsenal.

THE SUN

Arsenal could target Brighton manager Roberto De Zerbi if Real Madrid poach Mikel Arteta this summer.

Chelsea have reportedly sounded out Jose Mourinho over a sensational third stint in charge of the club.

THE ATHLETIC

The British government considered the possible failure of the takeover of Newcastle United to be an "immediate risk" to the United Kingdom's relationship with Saudi Arabia.

Kylian Mbappe has criticised Paris Saint Germain for not gaining his permission to use an interview with him in a video promoting season tickets for the 2023-24 campaign, adding that the club are not "Kylian Saint Germain".

DAILY EXPRESS

Manchester United have been handed positive news about Luke Shaw's condition after being forced off in Wednesday's 1-0 win against Brentford.

Marcel Sabitzer 'can imagine joining' Manchester United on a permanent basis this summer in a welcome boost for Erik ten Hag.

THE TIMES

Gregor Townsend is set to be offered a two-year contract extension that will keep the Scotland head coach in charge until 2025.

DAILY RECORD

Manchester United are reportedly locked in a three-way battle for the signature of Jeremie Frimpong in the summer transfer window.

Aberdeen striker Luis 'Duk' Lopes has caused a potential stir amongst the Pittodrie faithful after claiming that he only moved to the Scottish Premiership side in a bid to 'springboard' a move to England.

Anthony Stewart says he was told he had to leave Aberdeen in the final hours of the transfer window despite having no desire to leave Pittodrie.

Ryan Gauld has admitted he would consider a Canada call-up after failing to make the breakthrough for Scotland.

SCOTTISH SUN

Rangers are one of a number of top European clubs who have sent scouts to watch emerging MLS star Brandon Vazquez in action.





OS

Mubama: Semi-final hat-trick is a special moment!

Divin Mubama's goal-scoring run continued into the FA Youth Cup semi-finals.

The young striker struck a sensational hat-trick as the U18s swept passed Southampton to see a 6-1 win book the Club’s first FA Youth final in 24 years.

Mubama netted the Hammers first, third, and fifth, with Gideon Kodua, Callum Marshall and Favour Fawunmi also on the scoresheet.

A threat throughout, the 19-year-old was delighted to set up a final showdown with Arsenal.

“I was lucky enough to score three tonight and carry on the goal streak but without the boys, I couldn’t do it,” he stated.

“All season we have been grafting hard. And we know what we expect, the standard doesn’t stop. And we got the job done.”

Strikes from Mubama and Marshall saw the Irons move into a 2-0 lead in front of 7,000 at London Stadium, although it was a scoreline the Irons failed to defend at the weekend.

That, of course, brought some added pressure but Mubama explained he and his teammates were focused on getting the job done.

“To be fair, we just stayed on it,” he stated. “The boys remembered what happened against Brighton, but football can change so quickly. We came in at half-time and knew the job was not done. But we did that second half.”

Key to the Hammers’ success was a front three who enjoyed themselves throughout. Rotating through, Marshall, Kodua and Mubama excelled. They were all on to scoresheet, but it was their movement, skill and work rate that shone in east London.

The trio enjoy playing their football together. At London Stadium, it showed.

Mubama himself putting in another showing he hopes will see him make more first-team apperances in the future.

“Us three, we love goals,” Mubama enthused. “Off the pitch, we are all together. We stick together and you can see us making tackles.

“But I am finding my form with the Academy now. But every time I get my chance in the first team, I am trying to impress. All I can do is keep scoring and keep showing what I can do.

“I am still young and I like to play football whatever age-group you put me in I reckon I will score goals. The most important thing is playing football. I am enjoying playing whether it's with the U18s, U21s or the first team.”

One match where Mubama will hope to make his mark will, of course, be the final. A date for the fixture with Arsenal will be confirmed in due course, but Mubama is ready for the trip to the Emirates that is for sure.

“Yeah, you know it,” he stated, firmly. “We are ready. We fight and we go to war.”

Mubama's mindset is clear, then. Bring it on.




The Athletic

Meet the youngsters who have West Ham in a first FA Youth Cup final for 24 years



By Roshane Thomas

The Academy of Football is living up to its name.

West Ham United Under-18s strolled into the FA Youth Cup final with an emphatic 6-1 win over their Southampton counterparts on Thursday at the London Stadium. It is the first time the club’s youngsters, now coached by Kevin Keen, have reached this stage of the competition since 1998-99, when they won it in a famous 9-0 aggregate rout against Coventry City.

A hat-trick from Divin Mubama, and goals by Callum Marshall, Gideon Kodua and Favour Fawunmi made for another memorable evening for the West Ham academy as they progressed to face Arsenal in an all-London final at the end of this month.

Here, The Athletic traces the journeys of some of Keen’s young stars…

Divin Mubama

The 18-year-old scored his first senior goal in last month’s 4-0 Europa Conference League victory over AEK Larnaca. It was his second first-team appearance, having played in the 3-0 away win over FCSB — the club formerly known as Steaua Bucharest — in the group stage last November. The highly-rated forward scored a hat-trick in last night’s trouncing of Southampton.

“Everyone talks about the development that this academy does, through the likes of Jermain Defoe, Michael Carrick and Joe Cole,” he said. “For me to show the boys it can be done feels good.”

Mubama’s is a name West Ham supporters are becoming familiar with. The England Under-19 international, who signed a professional contract in October 2021, scored in the pre-season friendly win over Swiss side Servette back in July, having hit 15 goals in 20 appearances for the under-18s last season.

Mubama was born in Newham, east London, and his football journey started in nearby East Ham at St Bonaventure’s secondary school, alma mater to Defoe (former West Ham, Tottenham and England striker), Chris Hughton (the former Tottenham player and now Ghana manager), Chuba Akpom (current Middlesbrough striker) and Chuks Aneke (Charlton Athletic midfielder).

Although he is behind Gianluca Scamacca, Michail Antonio and Danny Ings, three senior internationals, in the pecking order for first-team game time, Mubama has been in imperious goalscoring form for the academy, with 27 goals in 28 appearances. He has amassed England 21 caps from under-15s to under-19s.

“Divin played for me in the 16s, in the 18s and then he went up to the 21s,” says Keen. “He’s a lad who works as hard as anyone. I normally get here at 7.30am. There are mornings I come in and Divin will (already) be on the back pitch doing finishing on his own, which tells you about his mentality. Or another day I’ll come in and he’ll be in the gym. He’s got a real focused mentality and a knack for scoring goals.

“It’s alright doing lots of finishing but you’ve still got to have that ability to turn up in the right place at the right time. Like his goal for the first team off the corner (against Larnaca). It looks simple but he’s read it, he’s seen where it’ll drop down and he’s flicked it in.

“He’s a really good footballer, he’s worked extremely hard. He’s still got a long way to go and bits to learn and to get stronger, fitter, quicker, but he’s got a real good chance of getting on that board and playing that 50 games for the first team that I want him to.”

Ollie Scarles

Versatile 17-year-old Searles impressed in that group finale against FCSB in November. Playing as a left wing-back, he came close to scoring and had one of his best performances of the season.

“It’s a surreal experience making my debut,” Scarles told BT Sport, who broadcast the game live in the UK, at the time. “It’s something every kid dreams of. On Wednesday, the XI that were starting did a positioning practice. I was in that and my heart dropped. I looked at Mark Robson (the club’s under-23s coach) and I was like, ‘Oh my god, I’m actually starting!’. It was mental.”

Scarles, who started last night against Southampton, joined West Ham at under-12s level after being released by fellow Londoners Chelsea. He made his debut for the under-21s in September’s 1-1 draw with Manchester United.

The England Under-19 international was an unused substitute in the 1-0 win away to Anderlecht the following month, and club staff have taken a liking to his humility. In the summer, Scarles worked with a coach to improve all aspects of his game. When he reported for pre-season training, his fitness results were ahead of some of his peers.

He signed professional terms in December, and has made 32 appearances for the under-18s and under-21s this season.

“I feel like this group is the best we’ve had for a while,” says Keen. “They’ve got to keep working hard and hopefully they’ll get an opportunity and end up playing 50-plus games for the club. That’s the dream of all the coaches, from the under-nines to the 18s to the 21s. I’m hopeful we’ve got two or three who can really have a career at West Ham.”

Regan Clayton is another promising full-back for the under-18s. The 18-year-old joined the academy when he was 10 and cites Bayern Munich and Canada left-back Alphonso Davies as his role model. Clayton has been an ever-present in this FA Youth Cup run.

Callum Marshall

Marshall has been one of the standout performers for the under-18s, registering 17 goals and five assists in 28 appearances this season. The 18-year-old forward, who signed his first professional contract in November, joined West Ham from Belfast club Linfield in January 2022.

“You’ve got seven or eight players who have been together since 10, 11, 12,” says Keen. “They’re all good. There’s a real tight bond. (And) You’ve had Callum and Patrick (Kelly) and Josh Briggs come in from Northern Ireland, who have really bought into it.

“They come in at 15, 16, they haven’t played Arsenal, Tottenham, Chelsea at nine, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, they’ve been playing school football in Northern Ireland. They come in and add that little bit of, ‘Come on then!’. Which is nice. You get that chemistry between them all.”

Kelly, an 18-year-old midfielder, has also impressed since moving from NIFL Premiership side Coleraine last July.

“We have got a strong scouting network in Northern Ireland, as have many clubs, but the success we’ve had obviously highlights that,” says academy manager Kenny Brown. “You can only bring so many in, you can’t just flood it with boys, even though the scouts over there are saying, ‘You’ve got to have a look at this boy, you’ve got to have a look at that boy’. Fucking hell!

“You’ve got to have enough spaces. You’ve got to balance it and get them over. What helps is that there’s a core of Irish boys here who have settled really well, took to it and obviously have enhanced the group and enhanced the environment, so when another boy comes in, they (the newcomer) can relate to that straight away.”

Kaelan Casey

Casey, 18, joined West Ham when he was five and cites current captain and England midfielder Declan Rice as his role model. He signed a professional contract last summer and made his first-team debut as a substitute against FCSB in Bucharest in November.

The young centre-back has made 29 appearances combined for the under-18s and under-21s this season.

“Kaelan has got a massive, massive chance,” Keen says. “He came on in the game in Romania, was on the bench for the Tottenham game (in February). He reminds me of (former West Ham stalwart) Alvin Martin — he reads the game, he can head it, he can pass it, he’s got a desire to want to do well for this club.”

“I’m proud of the progress he and his team-mates have made,” Casey’s father, Paul, has told The Athletic. “The coaches always get the best out of them. Most of them have played since they were nine. It’s a tight-knit group. The best thing is there’s a pathway for the youngsters to progress to the first team.”

Ryan Battrum has also caught the eye this season. A 17-year-old right-back, he also started the semi-final against Southampton having scored and registered an assist off the bench in the previous round’s 4-2 extra-time win over Ipswich Town.

Gideon Kodua

The captain of this team, Kodua has made great progress over the past 12 months. An 18-year-old forward, he has scored 10 goals in 20 appearances for the under-18s this season. A late bloomer who joined the club’s academy in 2017, Kodua impressed against Southampton, scoring West Ham’s fourth goal and providing two assists for Mubama.

During his days playing for the Newham District side, Kodua also turned out for the West Ham Foundation and was scouted there by academy coach George Chukwuma. He had the choice of going to non-League Southend United or West Ham and felt the latter were the better option. He came on a six-week trial, and during it scored against Luton Town. Shortly after that, he joined the club’s academy and was part of their tour to Belgium.

Kodua is a second-year scholar who signed his first professional contract in December, and many believe he is capable of earning a call-up for England’s junior teams.

Fellow attacker Fawunmi capped off West Ham’s great night by scoring the sixth goal against Southampton.

George Earthy

Earthy, who has been capped for England at under-16s level, was rewarded with a professional contract ahead of this season.

“It means the world to me,” said the midfielder. “I’ve been a West Ham fan my whole life. To sign my first professional contract here is a dream come true.”

Earthy has been in fine form, with eight goals and 11 assists in 33 appearances for the under-18s and under-21s.

Mason Terry

Goalkeeper Terry, who has been at West Ham since the age of nine, has kept four clean sheets in 17 appearances this season for their under-18s.

When it comes to recruiting young players, it is not uncommon for West Ham’s first team to give academy staff a helping hand.

“We had this goalkeeper signing for us from Colchester and it was his night to have the photos and get presented with the shirt,” Brown says. “We asked if there was any chance of a first-team player coming over, and they said, ‘Yeah, (the club’s first-choice goalkeeper Lukasz) Fabianski is coming over, no problem’. When I talk about that sort of environment, it’s that close.”

Lewis Orford

Having joined West Ham when he was five, midfielder Orford was part of the matchday squad that helped West Ham finish their Europa Conference League group campaign with a 100 per cent record, winning 3-0 away to FCSB.

“It was unbelievable,” said Orford. “The experience of travelling for a European away fixture, going on the plane, with all the facilities we get. Of course, I just want to get that as much as I can. Seeing the boys make their debut, I want to be there as soon as possible.”

Orford is a West Ham fan and his father, Mark, is a season-ticket holder. Now 17, he signed his professional contract in February.

“There’s a big picture of all the academy graduates who went to the game in Romania on the wall downstairs (in the academy building),” Keen says. “It’s an inspiration for all the younger lads coming in to see it.

“The gaffer (first-team manager David Moyes) has been really supportive. He’s always asking me about the players — him and (assistant) Kevin Nolan. Especially when there’s an international week and you’ve got Declan (Rice) going away and all the others, he’ll say, ‘Right let’s have a look at these young lads and see what they’ve got’.”

Mark Noble, club icon, former captain and now their sporting director, has also been a positive influence.

“He speaks to Lewis Orford and Ollie Scarles,” says Keen. “He pulls them to the side and gives them nuggets here and there, and that is priceless. That is something I would say is exclusive to West Ham. I don’t think you’ll have too many academies where you’ve got a bloke who played 500 games for the first team and is now sporting director doing that.”



Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

Balto 9:01 Fri Apr 7
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
From the Guardian - April 7

David Moyes is on the brink of being fired by West Ham, who will give serious consideration to making a change if they lose at Fulham and plunge deeper into relegation trouble on Saturday. Moyes is expected to be safe if he picks up at least a draw, but he is running out of time to save his job. West Ham are out of the bottom three on goal difference and there is major alarm at board level after the humiliating 5-1 home defeat by Newcastle on Wednesday.

The club have been keen to keep faith with Moyes, in part because they have not been able to identify a suitable replacement. The former Everton and Manchester United manager insisted he retained the hierarchy’s support after the Newcastle game. Moyes can argue he has done a decent job since returning to West Ham in December 2019 and he has successfully made it through at least two make-or-break fixtures this season.

West Ham have remained patient and, along with Nottingham Forest, are one of only two clubs in the bottom half of the Premier League not to have sacked their manager. Sources close to the board have previously insisted that David Sullivan, the largest shareholder, was determined to stick with Moyes. Those assurances disappeared after the defeat by Newcastle.

However, there is no guarantee that Moyes will go if Fulham beat West Ham, who have won only one away game in the league. It has been stressed that a lack of candidates could drag out the issue. It is understood there is a slim chance of Brendan Rodgers taking over after his departure from Leicester. Graham Potter wants to wait until the summer for his next job after his sacking by Chelsea.
West Ham are aware that Rafael Benítez would be willing to step in, but they do not want to give the Spaniard a long-term deal. Another possibility is placing Mark Warburton, part of Moyes’s backroom staff, in interim charge.

West Ham have hoped that Moyes, who led them into Europe in consecutive seasons, can revive his fortunes. The season could yet end in European glory – West Ham play the first leg of their Europa Conference League quarter-final at Gent next Thursday and are favourites to win the competition.
But their awful defending against Newcastle raised questions over whether Moyes’s message is getting through. The Guardian has previously reported that some figures in the dressing room have been expressing doubts over their manager’s tactics. The mood has been described as low, by well-placed sources.

Texas Iron 5:00 Fri Apr 7
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
CHEERS...

Thanks Alan 1:39 Fri Apr 7
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
147man 1:25 Fri Apr 7

147man 1:25 Fri Apr 7
Re: Friday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan





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