WHO Poll
Q: Manuel Pellegrini
a. A great signing for the Club and maybe the change of direction we all need
b. It will only be a great signing if the Board back him with decent funds
c. This is West Ham so it will only end in farce
d. I'm not sure about this one, I'll wait until SKY is back to hear what Gary Neville thinks, then I'll voice my opinion

Alan 11:52 Mon Aug 21
Monday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Manchester City are ready to break the world transfer record and meet forward Lionel Messi's £275m buyout clause at Barcelona. (Yahoo Sport - in French)

City officials have met Messi's representatives to discuss the possibility of a move for the 30-year-old Argentine to the Etihad. (Daily Record)

Arsenal have offered winger Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, 24, a four-year contract worth £125,000 a week to fend off interest from Chelsea.(Daily Star)

Barcelona captain Andres Iniesta, 33, whose contract expires next summer, has hinted that it is not certain he will stay at the club. (El Pais, via Daily Mail)

The La Liga side are set to pay the £36m release clause of Nice midfielder Jean Michael Seri, 26, with hopes of playing him alongside Liverpool's Philippe Coutinho, 25, next season. (Mundo Deportivo, via Daily Mail)

Chelsea and AC Milan have been put on alert after Borussia Dortmund striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, 28, said he needs to leave the club if he is to grow. (Radio Montecarlo Italy, via Sun)

West Ham are close to completing a deal for 25-year-old midfielder William Carvalho from Sporting Lisbon. (Sky Sports)

Turkish side Antalyaspor have offered Manchester City's France midfielder Samir Nasri, 30, a two-year contract worth about £70,000 per week. (Times - subscription required)

Crystal Palace manager Frank de Boer says Liverpool centre-back Mamadou Sakho, 27, is much too expensive for him to sign. (Guardian)

West Brom manager Tony Pulis must decide whether he wants to spend £15m on Tottenham defender Kevin Wimmer, 24, after the club sanctioned the deal. (Birmingham Mail)

Manchester United expect 35-year-old striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic to sign a new contract to stay at Old Trafford as early as this week. (ESPN FC)

The Swede was released by United in the summer after suffering a knee ligament injury last season, but his latest fitness update shows he is fighting fit. (Twitter)

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says he must sell before he can buy and admits the club "have too many players". (Independent)

Huddersfield Town striker Nahki Wells, 27, has joined Sheffield Wednesday's Jordan Rhodes, 27, on Wolverhampton Wanderers' shortlist of transfer targets. (Birmingham Mail)

Borussia Dortmund chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke has accused Barcelona of lacking class in their pursuit of 20-year-old winger Ousmane Dembele. (Daily Mail)

Leicester City players have told 26-year-old winger Riyad Mahrez, who is seeking a move away from the club, to stay at the King Power Stadium. (Leicester Mercury)


Referee Lee Mason's performance in Southampton's 3-2 win over West Ham has been criticised by ex-referees' chief Keith Hackett. "He struggled and I've questioned his ability before to look comfortable and control a Premier League game," said Hackett. (Daily Telegraph)

Newly promoted Newcastle United are not ready for the Premier League, says boss Rafael Benitez. The Magpies have lost their first two league games. (Daily Mirror)

Bournemouth striker Jermain Defoe, 34, is angry at being left out of the starting line-up for the first two Premier League games. (Daily Mirror)

Former England striker Alan Shearer says Manchester United's blistering start to the Premier League season has strengthened his view that Jose Mourinho's side will win the Premier League. (Sun)

Stoke police have trolled 'missing person' Mesut Ozil on Twitter following Stoke City's 1-0 win over Arsenal on Saturday. (Daily Telegraph)

Tottenham have been accused of creating an 'artificial' atmosphere inside Wembley as they played a drum beat over the PA system against Chelsea on Sunday. (Daily Telegraph)

Chelsea striker Diego Costa, 28, has continued his long-standing dispute with manager Antonio Conte by reiterating his displeasure at the Italian's text-message treatment. (MC News, via Daily Mail)

Chelsea defender David Luiz said his midfield orders from Antonio Conte against Tottenham were simple... to run. (Sky Sports, via Evening Standard)

Best of Sunday's transfer news

Chelsea boss Antonio Conte is planning to spend £200m on Leicester midfielder Danny Drinkwater, 27, Arsenal midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, 24, and three defenders from Southampton: Virgil van Dijk, 26, Cedric Soares, 25, and Ryan Bertrand, 28. (Sunday Express)

The Blues have also enquired about central defender Toby Alderweireld's interest in leaving Tottenham, with the 28-year-old's talks about a new deal progressing poorly. (Sunday Times - subscription required)

Atletico Madrid are prepared to offer up to £50m for Chelsea's 28-year-old striker Diego Costa. (Mail on Sunday)

Costa has turned down loan offers from Shanghai SIPG and Tianjin Quanjian that would have earned him £13m between now and November. (Sun on Sunday)

Newcastle are considering making a bid for their former striker Andy Carroll, 28, now with West Ham. (Sunday Mirror)

Guardian Rumour Mill

Michael Butler

On the face of it, things are settling down at Chelsea. Michy Batshuayi’s near-post instincts are alive and well, Marcos Alonso’s goals mean that Diego Costa’s absence is felt less and less by the day, and Antonio Conte seems happy with the transfer business this summer. But then, shockwaves from Germany. A cryptic message from one Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who both “surely needs to leave Borussia Dortmund” and “needs time to think about it”. Either way, Conte has got goosebumps. “This club and these fans are incredible, but if I want to grow, I feel I need to leave,” said the Gabon international on Sunday. “This is the question I keep on asking myself – and I don’t have an answer. I need time to think about it. If I want to grow, I surely need to leave this summer. I am 27 and I need to grow. If I leave, it will only be somewhere I would play regularly.” Chelsea are not Aubameyang’s only suitors – big-spending Milan still hold a strong interest, the club where the forward started his career.

Given that Liverpool have nil interest in losing Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona, the Catalan club’s email about a ‘deadline’ to accept their latest offer has been happily assigned to a folder marked ‘junk’. Sky Sports claims that Liverpool had until 7pm on Sunday to accept Barça’s latest bid, thought to be £119m, but with the ultimatum making less of an impression than the Rumour Mill on a stag do, the deal may have finally hit the buffers for good. More encouraging for Ernesto Valverde and co is the imminent arrival of Jean Michaël Seri from Nice, after the coin for his £36m release clause was hoisted out of the vault – and that of Ousmane Dembélé, who is “just hours” from completing a £110m move from Dortmund, according to reports in France, in language reminiscent of an estate agent promising that they are running “just minutes” late or that a flat is just “moments” from any amenities. What does it all mean? Nobody knows.

Samir Nasri is off to Turkey! Well he’s technically already there, having flown by private jet to meet the accountants at Antalyaspor. Despite being a bright spark in Manchester City’s pre-season games, the 30-year-old appears to have no future under Pep Guardiola and is expected to sign a two-year deal with the Süper Lig club, who count Samuel Eto’o, Jérémy Ménez, Johan Djourou and the former Spurs midfielder Sandro in their ranks.

The Daily Star seems to think Arsenal have offered Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain £125,000 a week – an increase of £25,00 a week on their initial offer – to ward off interest from Chelsea, who are mulling over a £40m bid for the England international.

West Brom like the cut of Kevin Wimmer’s jib and are willing to pay up to £18m to secure said jib at the Hawthorns. Spurs, having signed Davinson Sánchez, have little room for Wimmer in their defence and a move to West Brom would open up the possibility of Jonny Evans completing a transfer to Manchester City. The magical merry-go-round of the transfer window just keeps on giving.

Burnley are close to breaking their transfer record after a £15m bid for Chris Wood was accepted by Leeds over the weekend. The striker earned some hard-won praise on Twitter after announcing to Whites fans 34 minutes before he was due to start against Sunderland on Saturday that “given it has always been my ambition to play at the highest level, I don’t feel it is right to play today”. His move to the highest level Burnley should be rubber-stamped on Monday.

Football London

"Brutal attack" - former ref wants West Ham winger Arnautovic banned for five games

Arnautovic was rightly given his marching orders after an horrendous elbow at St Mary's

By Sam Inkersole

Former Premier League referee Keith Hackett says Marko Arnautovic should be banned for five games after his "brutal" elbow on Jack Stephens as West Ham lost to Southampton on Saturday.

The Hammers record signing was given a straight red card just past the half hour mark at St Mary's after clattering into the Saints defender and despite his protests, the Austrian can have absolutely no complaints over the decision.

Arnautovic apologised to his team mates at half time and then to the Hammers fans post-game on Instagram following his dismissal, which will see him banned for at least three games anyway.

However, giving his verdict on You Are The Ref, Hackett called for an immediate five-game ban for Arnautovic and for anyone else who is caught using their elbows and getting sent off.

Hackett - who called Arnautovic's challenge "outrageous and brutal", said: "The referees failure to detect this challenge contributed to West Ham’s Arnautovic deciding foolishly to take matters into his own hands by committing an outrageous brutal act, deliberately using his elbow on an opponent.

“This should be a five match ban! It is my belief that at the moment we are witnessing too many challenges that are reckless and with excessive force. The PGMOL need to call a meeting with the Premier League, PFA and LMA to express their concerns so that everyone understands the seriousness of these challenges."

Hackett also complained about Mason missing a "blatant" red card for Mark Noble, who launched into a pretty awful, studs up challenge on Mario Lemina that went unpunished.


Manager on Monday

Bilic: Time to climb the table, Chicharito's qualities and transfer targets

Slaven Bilic says he is desperate to lift West Ham United off the bottom of the Premier League at the earliest possible opportunity.

The Hammers sit at the foot of the table after losing their opening two matches at Manchester United and Southampton, but know victory at Newcastle United on Saturday will see them rise above the Magpies.

“You don’t want to be bottom of the league, even before the first game, so we need to change that first letter from W!” he joked.

“It’s never good to be bottom of the league, so I would like to change it and not to be that way, but to be fair, although I am very disappointed, we’re going to take a lot of positives with the way we played the game.”

One major positive was the performance and two goals scored by Chicharito at St Mary’s Stadium, where the Mexican’s outstanding reactions and finishing so nearly secured a heroic point for his new team.

“We are very pleased that he is our player,” Bilic confirmed. “He was our target and it was a long shot, but we never gave up on him and it was always possible.

“We had to fight with a few other clubs, of course, but we were delighted when we did it because we expected and knew what we were getting and he showed on Saturday what he is all about. Plus, the work he did when we were down to ten and to play the whole second half in left midfield when he was needed [was outstanding].

“He knows we liked him because we wanted to get him when he went from Manchester United to Leverkusen [in 2015]. We spoke then and I called him on the phone. He opted for Leverkusen and he called and said ‘Thank you gaffer but I’m going to Leverkusen but maybe we’ll speak again’.

“After two years we spoke again so we didn’t start from zero. I know it helped him to choose us.”

So, after two examples of why he has played for some of the world’s biggest clubs, Bilic was asked to list the qualities that make Chicharito such a predator in the opposition penalty area?

“It’s almost impossible to mark him because he doesn’t only have one movement and you can lose him,” he observed. “Even then, you don’t have to lose him because he is so sharp over a few yards that gives him the advantage.

“He has a mixture. Most players who are quick don’t have those movements, or the other way around, but he has both, and that’s why that combination puts defenders in a tough situation when the cross comes in.”

Another talented new boy, Marko Arnautovic, was sent-off after catching Southampton defender Jack Stephens with his arm.

Bilic refused to be drawn on the incident, but does expect the Austrian to make up for his aberration when he returns from suspension.

“I am not going to talk about the red card or the penalties, but I can say it was very hard for us and a big, massive blow for the team to be let down and to play with ten men for the majority of the game, for such a long, long period,” he said.

“Of course [I expect him to make up for this] because he is a very talented player and he knows and everybody knows why we got him.”

Finally, Bilic was asked if the Hammers expect to bring in any more new faces before the transfer window closes. He replied in the affirmative.

“We’re still not over the transfer window and we’re in a good position budget-wise because we got a few, but we also sold a few players,” he explained.

“We have enough centre-backs in our team if they stay fit. You can’t have eight players in one situation. We have one position we want to fill unless if someone goes and we have to fill in.”


West Ham United fans react on Twitter to Grzegorz Krychowiak link

Shane Callaghan

West Ham United have been linked with the 27-year-old midfielder.

According to The Sun, West Ham United are interested in signing out-of-favour Paris Saint-Germain's defensive midfielder Grzegorz Krychowiak.

The 27-year-old Poland international, valued at around £22.8 million according to Transfermarkt, could be allowed to leave the French capital before the month is out after starting only 10 games in all competitions last season.

The former Sevilla star, who only joined les Parisiens last summer, is available on loan according to The Sun as the report claims that West Ham are weighing up a move.

The Irons have been linked with William Carvalho for a lot of August, but it remains to be seen whether Slaven Bilic pays the necessary £36 million to sign him.

Nevertheless, West Ham supporters seem well on board for the prospect of bringing in Krychowiak, who has 45 caps for his country.

I'd have him #greatplayer @GrzegKrychowiak
— Sean Dean ⚒ (@adamjames2008) August 20, 2017

I would take Krychowiak or whatever from PsG if it works out cheaper. He was outstanding at Sevilla.
— billy curwood (@billycurwood1) August 18, 2017

Are we just looking at players with longer names?
— Paul Myfinghur (@pre_preast) August 20, 2017

If the Carvalho deal collapses somehow I would like us to go in for Krychowiak instead.
— WHU (@WHU__) August 13, 2017

He has so much experience, international level as well, been in champions league, better, more powerful, I would take him
— Imran (@MhdImran0402) August 19, 2017

Bring him on
— malikinetic1905 (@malikinetic) August 19, 2017

Smalling or Sakho, Carvalho and Thorgan Hazard. Krychowiak on loan if possible, sort it out @davidgold @DaveSulley @jsullivanwhu
— WHU (@WHU__) August 19, 2017

Defensive midfield isn't a pressing issue for Bilic.

The former Croatia manager has Pedro Obiang and Cheikhou Kouyate to play there and perhaps the Hammers boss might be better off using whatever money he has on a striker.

Javier Hernandez, a £16 million recruit, scored twice in Saturday's 3-2 defeat at Southampton, but the Mexican international, who is competing with Andy Carroll, Diafra Sakho and Andre Ayew, could do with better competition.

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

shim 9:41 Mon Aug 21
Re: Monday newspapers (includes West Ham)
I'd have thought Nasri would've been worth a look at for the sort of dough mentioned, 3.2 million & 70k a week...

threesixty 12:28 Mon Aug 21
Re: Monday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Why not offer Nasri 80k for 2 yrs and get rid of Snodgrass / drop Ayew?

ted fenton 11:54 Mon Aug 21
Re: Monday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan 11:52 Mon Aug 21

Thanks Alan 11:52 Mon Aug 21
Re: Monday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

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