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Alan 12:15 Wed Apr 3
Wednesday news (includes West Ham)

Barcelona are looking to wrap up a deal for Sporting Lisbon boss Ruben Amorim as a replacement for the departing Xavi, while Liverpool and Bayern Munich reassess their options after Xabi Alonso decided to stay at Bayer Leverkusen. (Independent)

However, the Barcelona board want to change Xavi's mind about leaving and are urging him to stay at the Nou Camp. (Athletic - subscription required)

Barcelona will target Manchester City and Norway striker Erling Haaland, 23, in 2025 as part of a signings strategy that they hope will convince Xavi to stay beyond this season. (Mundo Deportivo - in Spanish)

Chelsea may have to sell some of their star players to raise cash to meet profit and sustainability rules this summer but England defender Reece James, 24, wants to stay at Stamford Bridge. (HITC)

Arsenal have approached Bayern Munich about a move for their Germany midfielder Joshua Kimmich, but have been told the 29-year-old's future will not be discussed until the summer. (Football Transfers)

Arsenal also appear to be in pole position to sign 25-year-old Real Sociedad's Spanish midfielder Martin Zubimendi, who has also been linked with Bayern Munich. (Caught Offside)

Manchester City and Liverpool expect their attempts to sign Bayer Leverkusen and Germany midfielder Florian Wirtz, 20, to be hampered by Xabi Alonso's decision to stay with the Bundesliga leaders. (HITC)

Real Madrid are not interested in signing Spain goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga, 29, permanently and he will return to parent club Chelsea when his loan spell at the Bernabeu expires in June. (Fabrizio Romano)

Manchester United have Everton and England's 21-year-old Jarrad Branthwaite, Boca Juniors and Argentine 18-year-old Aaron Anselmino and 19-year-old Barcelona and Senegal international Mikayil Faye on their wishlist for defensive reinforcements this summer. (Mail)

Jadon Sancho, currently on loan at Borussia Dortmund, may get another chance at Manchester United if the club appoint Southampton's Jason Wilcox as their director of football. Wilcox worked with the 24-year-old England forward at Manchester City's academy. (Manchester Evening News)

Manchester United have a concrete interest in appointing Ipswich manager Kieran McKenna as their new boss. The Northern Irishman, 37, used to work at the club as an assistant coach under Jose Mourinho and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. (Football Insider)

Real Madrid would like to sign 18-year-old Lille centre-back Leny Yoro - who has also been linked with Manchester United, Liverpool and Chelsea - this summer after the Frenchman told his club he wants a new challenge. (Athletic - subscription needed)

Tottenham may be forced to sell Brazil defender Emerson Royal, 25, to help fund moves of their own in the summer transfer window. (Football Insider)

Leeds United and England Under-21 midfielder and right-back Archie Gray, 18, is being watched by Real Madrid and Bayern Munich alongside a host of Premier League sides. (HITC)

Barcelona and Spain left-back Marcos Alonso, 33, is in advanced talks with Atletico Madrid about joining on a free transfer this summer. (Cadena Ser - in Spanish)

Barcelona have identified 19-year-old Fiorentina and Italy defender Michael Kayode, who also interests Arsenal, as an alternative to a permanent deal for Manchester City's on-loan Portugal international Joao Cancelo, 29. (Football Transfers)

Birmingham are in pole position, ahead of a number of other Championship clubs, to sign Queen's Park Under-18s defender Darryl Carrick, having watched the Scottish centre-half on numerous occasions this season. (Team Talk)

Sky Paper Talk


Jadon Sancho could get a second chance to impress at Manchester United with potential technical director Jason Wilcox a big fan of the winger, currently out on loan at Borussia Dortmund.

Erik ten Hag will have significantly less power in transfer dealing this summer if he keeps his role as Manchester United manager.

Marcus Rashford has given the YouTuber who bought his wrecked Rolls Royce a helping hand in its restoration, after the video of him buying the car received over five million views.

Juventus are prepared to sack Massimiliano Allegri after a shocking run of Serie A form, with "iron sergeant" U19 head coach Paolo Montero likely to take over in the interim if a move is made.

Patrick Kluivert has admitted he is surprised Ajax have not approached him about taking over as manager with John van 't Schip not expected to become permanent boss after a spell in interim charge.

Arsenal coach Jack Wilshere is sure 14-year-old prodigy Max Dowman can be fast-tracked into the club's first team as he continues to impress in the U18 age group.


Barcelona are ready to make their move for Liverpool-linked Sporting Lisbon boss Ruben Amorim as they seek a replacement for Xavi Hernandez, who will leave the Nou Camp this summer.


Manchester United want former Newcastle player, and current Sporting Lisbon director of football, Hugo Viana to join their new-look board as Chief Operating Officer.

Manchester United's new regime are making enemies across football with their ruthless recruitment drive.

Marcos Alonso is set to join Atletico Madrid on a free transfer when his contract with rivals Barcelona expires in the summer.

Four-time snooker world champion John Higgins has admitted this year's World Championship could be his last and said he is starting to "lose his edge".

Judy Murray is a shock candidate to become part of Novak Djokovic's coaching team in the wake of Goran Ivanisevic's departure.


The chances of Roberto De Zerbi becoming the next Liverpool manager have receded with the Italian not currently considered a leading candidate.

Cole Palmer is expected to be rewarded for a fine first season at Chelsea with a new contract including a lucrative pay rise.

Manchester United players have held one-to-one meetings with Sir Dave Brailsford to find out the Ineos vision to restore the club to its former glory.

Leicester City have announced huge losses of £89.7m for the 2022/23 season, and are already under pressure to avoid further sanctions next year.

The British Olympic Association will stick with a traditional red, white and blue Union flag on its kit for the 2024 Games in Paris after outrage surrounding the sale of merchandise which included shades of pink and purple on top.

New Zealand star Ardie Savea says the All Blacks need to follow South Africa's lead and start picking players who are plying their trade overseas.


Premier League clubs are looking at Manchester United teenager Bendito Mantato with the Old Trafford outfit yet to tie up his future.


Aberdeen are refusing to give up hope that they can persuade Elfsborg boss Jimmy Thelin to become the next manager at Pittodrie.

Celtic remain interested in QPR defender Jake Clarke-Salter despite plenty of mid-table Premier League clubs also keeping tabs on him.

South Korea Olympics boss Hwang Seon-Hong remains hopeful the Celtic will allow him to include Yang Hyun-Jun in his squad for the U23 Asian Cup later this month and will allow him to join up later than other players if that helps the Scottish club.


Luis Palma could give Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers another major pre-derby boost by proving his fitness for Ibrox.


Kurt Zouma’s unusual finishing touch helps West Ham peg back Spurs

The ball bounces off Kurt Zouma’s back to give West Ham an equaliser against Tottenham. Photograph: Tom Jenkins/The Guardian

Jacob Steinberg at the London Stadium

The fact that Tottenham saw most of the ball came as little surprise. West Ham are built to absorb pressure and the longer this game remained locked at 1-1, the less likely that David Moyes was to tell his side to gamble on chasing the goal that would have tightened their grip on seventh place.

Perhaps Moyes, drawing on that pragmatic streak, wanted to see some proper defending after West Ham’s collapse against Newcastle. There was a lot of talk of “resilience” from the Scot, who rued Michail Antonio wasting a glorious opportunity on the hour, and a distinct relish in the way he spoke about restricting Spurs to so few clear chances. “We had to defend,” said Moyes, who accepted that a draw was the right result. “But that is part of football.”

Both managers were in ­philosophical mode. Whereas Moyes opted against making any ­substitutions, perhaps because he was still scarred by the memory of bringing on Kalvin Phillips against Newcastle, Ange Postecoglou turned to his bench five times. The Spurs manager could see that his side, who now lie two points off fourth-placed Aston Villa, needed an extra gear in the final third. They had to be disappointed with their inability to create more after West Ham responded to Brennan Johnson’s early goal with an equaliser from Kurt Zouma.

“They sit deep and make it ­difficult,” Postecoglou said. “It’s just probably for us in the final third we lacked clarity of thought. They’re human beings. I’d love to have a joy-stick and help them through that.”

The first talking point had centred around whether a counterpunching team can thrive without solid foundations. Gaps have appeared in West Ham’s defence recently, a record of one clean sheet in the league in 2024 irritating Moyes, and it was too easy for Spurs to strike after five minutes.

James Ward-Prowse and Tomas Soucek were not close enough to James Maddison when the playmaker popped up in a pocket of space. West Ham pined for the security provided by their suspended midfield enforcer, Edson Álvarez. They struggle ­without Álvarez, who might have done more to stop Maddison isolating Timo ­Werner against Vladimir Coufal.

It was a mismatch. Werner went down the outside and Coufal, who struggled against Newcastle’s ­wingers last weekend, could not stop the forward from teeing up Johnson for a simple finish from close range.

The next 10 minutes were ­awkward for West Ham. Indecision set in and Spurs almost profited from an intense high press. Pedro Porro and Son Heung-min went close after errors from Lucas Paquetá and Coufal.

Yet West Ham had threatened at 0-0, Jarrod Bowen slicing wide after Porro lost possession to ­Mohammed Kudus, and their physicality ­unsettled Spurs. Even Paquetá joined in, taking a moment out of his showboating to flatten Maddison.

It was 1-1 by then, West Ham’s equaliser arriving when Spurs failed to deal with a corner. Bowen, a live wire on the right, won it by driving against Destiny Udogie and the visitors cracked when the England winger lifted the ball into the six-yard box. Guglielmo Vicario was pinned to his line by Antonio, Micky van de Ven was ball-watching and nobody challenged Zouma.

The goal invigorated West Ham, who saw Ward-Prowse’s free-kick test Vicario, but they were forced back at times. Johnson’s speed was a worry and Maddison kept scheming. Postecoglou thought that Yves Bissouma was outstanding in midfield.

West Ham looked to step up at the start of the second half, Antonio drawing a fine save from Vicario after slack play from Rodrigo Bentancur, Paquetá’s shot whistling just wide.

Yet the possession statistics heavily favoured Spurs. West Ham sank back, waiting for openings on the break, and one appeared on the hour, only for Antonio to shoot straight at Vicario after running on to ­Ward-Prowse’s pass and outmuscling Van de Ven.
Rayan Aït-Nouri scores Wolves' leveller in first-half stoppage time at Burnley.

The long spells of Spurs dominance resumed, although they rarely got behind West Ham. Maddison would fade before making way for Dejan Kulusevski. West Ham, winless in four league games, dug in and hoped that one more chance would materialise on the counterattack. Bowen, Paquetá and Kudus had glimpses of goal in added time.

Yet Moyes seemed content with a solid display from his centre-backs, Zouma and Konstantinos ­Mavropanos. Lukasz Fabianski, West Ham’s goalkeeper, did not have to do much.

There were 12 shots from Spurs, including one that Udogie should have done better with in the last minute of added time, but only four on target. Both sides lacked a ­cutting edge.

The Athletic

West Ham recovery a reminder that they are new masters of bouncebackability

By Roshane Thomas

There have been many occasions this season when West Ham United have responded positively to setbacks. The manner of their performance against Tottenham Hotspur was the latest example of their ability to mount a recovery.

Following three days of soul-searching in the aftermath of their implosion against Newcastle United, West Ham grafted, dug in and demonstrated grit to claim a creditable point against Spurs. Very few of the home crowd left before the final whistle. No gnawing sense of dread swept around the arena.

Instead, the home support urged Jarrod Bowen & Co on to find a late winner.

Chances fell to Michail Antonio and Lucas Paqueta, but the duo were wasteful with their efforts. Yet the point was the least the hosts deserved.

It might have been different had Kurt Zouma, West Ham’s captain, not equalised so soon after Brennan Johnson’s opener earlier in the contest. But West Ham have a habit of bouncing back within games, too. This season, they have now secured 16 points from losing positions.

That maintains a trend from last term when they ranked joint-sixth in the Premier League for coming from behind to secure some kind of reward.

“It’s really good (that we’ve gained 16 points from losing positions) but, on the other hand, we need to stop conceding first,” said midfielder Tomas Soucek.

“We’ve conceded first against Newcastle and Tottenham, so hopefully we’ll improve, but it’s great we’re able to get back in the game. We just want to make sure from our next game (against Wolverhampton Wanderers) we’re the side that scores first.

“This was a London derby against Tottenham and we wanted to produce a good performance for our fans. We beat Tottenham earlier in the season and now we’ve drawn, so we’ve gained four points from those two games. We are still seventh in the league and we want to play European football next season.

“After the loss against Newcastle, we were all disappointed — I still feel disappointed — but we were determined to bounce back. I thought we created enough chances to win. Now with this draw, Saturday is another big game to hopefully get more points for European football.”

With adversity comes strength. Moyes and his players were in disbelief having surrendered a 3-1 lead at Newcastle to lose 4-3. But Zouma, watched from the stands at the London Stadium by his friend Paul Pogba, reminded his team-mates pre-match on Tuesday of the harmony within the group and the need to stick together. His words had the desired effect.

This was a morale-boosting performance.

“I think it probably was (a fair result) in the end,” Moyes said. “I thought we did a lot of good things again, showed much more resilience defensively tonight than we had certainly at the weekend. We were much more aggressive. We had to be, against a really good team.

“But, overall, if you’re giving me four points off Spurs before the season started, I’d have shook your hand and walked away and said: ‘Thanks very much.’

“I’ve tried to instil that ruggedness, that fighting spirit. The boys showed lots of that. Sometimes you can show it and it doesn’t work. You’d have thought after four minutes, ‘What’s going on here?’ after they score a goal not dissimilar to the ones scored at the weekend.”

Thankfully, that did not prove the prelude for more.

Moyes’ side have a penchant for proving doubters wrong and rallying together in tough times. When they lost 1-0 in their last-16 Europa League first-leg tie against Freiburg, the manager and players referenced a previous comeback, against Sevilla in March 2022, as cause for optimism. In fine fashion, West Ham duly roared to a 5-0 win in the second leg with Mohammed Kudus scoring a goal-of-the-season contender.

When West Ham were on an eight-game winless run from January to late February, there was speculation surrounding Moyes’ future. The manager, who is out of contract at the end of this season, said he had been offered a new deal in February but would “wait until the end of the season” before deciding whether to sign it. Yet, with tension ramping up, the home game against Brentford was viewed as a must-win occasion.

And, again, the players displayed fighting spirit to secure a timely 4-2 victory, with Bowen scoring his first career hat-trick.

The 5-1 loss to Liverpool in the quarter-final of the Carabao Cup is one of the nadirs of the campaign. Moyes was criticised for heavily rotating his team selection, but his decision was later vindicated by back-to-back wins over Manchester United and Arsenal.

A sickness bug was a contributing factor to the 5-0 loss to Fulham in December. Once the players recovered, they scored five goals combined without reply in their next two games against Freiburg and Wolves.

There are other examples. Remember the 3-2 defeat against Brentford in November? West Ham were in danger of seeing their promising start to the season fade. Yet that proved to be a turning point, with Moyes’ team going unbeaten in their next six games in all competitions.

In the coming weeks, their togetherness will be key if they are to restore momentum, overcome Bundesliga leaders Bayer Leverkusen in the quarter-final of the Europa League and seal points in tough games against Crystal Palace, Liverpool and Chelsea.

There have been occasions this season when West Ham looked to be heading for a downward slope, but true to form they always find a way of bouncing back. Their ability to recover should not be underestimated.

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

Texas Iron 5:01 Wed Apr 3
Re: Wednesday news (includes West Ham)

Thanks Alan 12:32 Wed Apr 3
Re: Wednesday news (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

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