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 11:10 Thu Sep 7
Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Eighteen-year-old France striker Kylian Mbappe, who joined Paris St-Germain on loan from Monaco in the transfer window, says joining Arsenal was a "real option" after meeting Gunners boss Arsene Wenger. (Telegraph)

Manchester City will offer just £20m for Arsenal's Chile forward Alexis Sanchez, 28, in January. (Daily Mail)

The Gunners' decision to keep Sanchez at the club could cost as much as £140m, says Wenger. (BeinSports)

Sanchez has been called "fat" by his former Chile coach and is a doubt for Arsenal's game against Bournemouth on Saturday. (Daily Mirror)

Crystal Palace manager Frank de Boer has one more game to save his job at Selhurst Park.(Telegraph)

Chelsea and Arsenal are expected to renew their interest in Bayern Munich and Germany forward Thomas Muller, 27, in January. (Daily Mirror)

Former England winger Ashley Young, 32, is ready for talks with Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho over his future and wants to stay at Old Trafford for one more year. (Sun)

England striker Jamie Vardy, 30, says he wants a move to a foreign club when he leaves Leicester City. (Daily Star)

The row between Sporting Lisbon and West Ham over the failed transfer of William Carvalho has escalated. The Portuguese side's president has responded to Hammers chairman David Sullivan's claims that a bid for the 25-year-old Portugal midfielder had been accepted by Sporting. (London Evening Standard)

Two emails appear to prove West Ham did make offers to Sporting for Carvalho. (Sky Sports)

Manager Rafael Benitez is set to stay at Newcastle despite frustration at the club's transfer activity. (Daily Express)

Ukraine winger Yevhen Konoplyanka, 27, has confirmed that Stoke City tried to sign him from Schalke this summer. (Stoke Sentinel)

Everton are lining up a January move for Porto's Spanish defender Ivan Marcano, 30. (Daily Mail)

Liverpool and Wales forward Ben Woodburn is set to be rewarded with a new long-term contract at Anfield when he turns 18 next month. (Guardian)

Leicester's England Under-21 winger Demarai Gray has admitted he is unhappy at the club and has been left frustrated by his lack of first-team football. (Sun)


Relations between Chelsea have and Spain striker Diego Costa, 28, have further deteriorated after the club removed his car from his first-team parking spot and put it in a youth team bay. (Sun)

Arsenal's Alexis Sanchez says he is "tired of being criticised" after Chile suffered a 1-0 defeat to Bolivia. (Metro)

Manchester City full-back Kyle Walker is the quickest player in the Premier League this season. (Liverpool Echo)

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp put local rivalry to one side as he left a get-well-soon message for a young Everton supporter on Tuesday. (Sky Sports)

Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo has been posing with his new Ferrari. (Instagram)

West Brom's yoga club is growing bigger by the season. (Express and Star)

Best of Wednesday's transfer gossip

Manchester City are unlikely to bid more than £20m for Arsenal forward Alexis Sanchez, 28, in January. (Sun)

Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea, 26, has asked Real Madrid defender Sergio Ramos to sort his move to the Bernabeu. (Diario Gol - in Spanish)

Brazil midfielder Philippe Coutinho, 25, was never going to leave Liverpool this summer, says the club's former managing director Christian Purslow. (Sky Sports)

Diego Costa, 28, has arrived back in London as he bids to end his Chelsea stay and arrange a return to his former side Atletico Madrid. (Marca - in Spanish)

The Spain striker's team-mates believe he is giving serious consideration to returning to the Blues and taking his punishment for going AWOL in a bid to sort out his future. (Daily Telegraph)

But Chelsea sources are insisting that the striker has not returned to London. (Daily Mirror)

Guardian Rumour Mill

Paul Doyle

The Mill is intrigued by reports that “relations between Chelsea and Diego Costa have deteriorated”. How much worse could things have got? Has Costa moved from Brazil to the moon? Have there been tweets about fire and fury? No, apparently not. Instead what’s happened is Chelsea have cleared out the player’s locker at the club’s training ground and pushed his car from a first-team spot to a youth team bay.

A youth team bay! Not even to a car crusher. And since there are no reports of the locker contents being incinerated in a public fire, it seems there’s still some love between Chelsea and Costa, after all. He’ll be banging in goals for them against Atlético Madrid in the Champions League in a few weeks, you wait and see. By January he could be laying out blue bunting at Stamford Bridge to welcome Thomas Müller, assuming Arsenal do not beat Chelsea to the signing of the Bayern Munich forward.

Crystal Palace have suggested to Frank de Boer that if Joel Ward doesn’t play like Johan Cruyff against Burnley this weekend, then the manager’s car will be moved to a bay outside the nearest job centre. Or words to that effect.

Ashley Young is ready for showdown talks with José Mourinho, who is understood to be happy to sit down for a chat with the player so long as the manager is allowed to mention his sponsored watch every 30 seconds. Young is expected to agree to that in the hope of not being sold to West Brom in January.

Everton are preparing to swoop for the Porto defender Iván Marcano. Very good, Ronald, but … A STRIKER, A STRIKER, A STRIKER!

Liverpool are refusing to include a release clause in a new contract for Emre Can, which means the player looks likely to leave at the end of this season. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is getting his hopes up. Ben Woodburn, meanwhile, is close to agreeing a new deal at Anfield, with some giddy Welsh people understood to have suggested that any release clause for the youngster should be set at whatever Gareth Bale’s worth plus £100m.

Hatem Ben Arfa is considering taking legal action against Paris Saint-Germain over the way the club has treated him since he declined a transfer away during the summer.

Lille fans, already angry over the summer sale to Bordeaux of the striker Nicolas de Préville, are increasingly baffled by the mysterious ways of their manager, Marcelo Bielsa, after it was revealed that the manager turned down opportunities to buy either Wilfried Bony or Vincent Janssen to replace the departed De Préville. Steady on, Lille fans, there’s method to those decision by El Loco’s.


Pointless and desperate: Crystal Palace and West Ham already under pressure

Paul Wilson

The Premier League returns this weekend but it is a fair bet Slaven Bilic and Frank de Boer have not enjoyed the international break too much and both are in dire need of a positive result

As international breaks go, the one England have just enjoyed was quite eventful, even if nothing Gareth Southgate’s players could produce on the pitch was likely to steal the headlines from the way in which Wayne Rooney celebrated a rare weekend off.

How assiduously Rooney can put the past behind him and resume what was shaping up to be a promising return to his former club will be one of the focal points when Premier League football returns at the weekend, as will the behaviour of Dele Alli. A theory is emerging that the Tottenham player has not just taken Rooney’s place in the England team but also appropriated his penchant for needless controversy, and both forwards will be in the spotlight when Spurs visit Goodison on Saturday.

Other sources of scrutiny, whether they play or not, will be Alexis Sánchez for Arsenal, Philippe Coutinho for Liverpool, Virgil van Dijk for Southampton and Riyad Mahrez for Leicester, all players who might have hoped or been led to believe they would be turning out for someone else by now. Then there is the question of how Manchester City will perform against Liverpool, now Sergio Agüero and Raheem Sterling know they are not quite the last word in attacking threats as far as Pep Guardiola is concerned, not forgetting the issue over whether Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is going to look any more a £40m player than he did in his last couple of outings for Arsenal and England.

Pressure all around then, though in terms of teams rather than individuals there is no doubt who will be going into the weekend with the most fear and dread. Three games into the new season – back in days of yore this would be the stage when the first league tables would start to be published – there are still three teams awaiting their first point. Crystal Palace are actually still awaiting their first goal, though the two sides bookending the Eagles in the bottom three are not doing much better. Bournemouth have one, Charlie Daniels’ splendid though misleading early strike against Manchester City at the end of last month, and while West Ham have scored twice they have already conceded 10 and as a result sit at the foot of the table with the worst goal difference in the division.

As might be expected, the managerial futures of Frank de Boer and Slaven Bilic have been called into question, though Eddie Howe is probably in credit for a little while longer. Interestingly Bilic at West Ham is considered a tactical dunce, hence the popular theory that Rafael Benítez would make a suitable replacement, while De Boer has been accused of trying to introduce too much of a tactical rethink too soon. You can tell how badly that has gone down by the number of Palace fans now coming round to the idea that Roy Hodgson might be an improvement.

For Palace and West Ham at least, this weekend could be make or break. Howe takes his Bournemouth side to Arsenal, where in normal circumstances they will be allowed to play football, and might even be able to take advantage of any non-normal discontent within the Gunners’ ranks. Bournemouth lost the corresponding fixture 3-1 last season, though Sánchez scored two of the Arsenal goals. While Bournemouth will have to show more urgency and conviction than they have summoned thus far this season to achieve an upset, even if they lose it ought not to be viewed too damningly. The Emirates is still a difficult place to go in search of a win, particularly for a club the size of Bournemouth, and it would be harsh for anyone to reach for the panic button as a result of a defeat at Arsenal.

Palace and West Ham, on the other hand, have no such margin for error. Both are faced with ostensibly winnable games, Palace at Burnley on Sunday and West Ham at home to Huddersfield on Monday, yet as everyone knows, the term “winnable game” is often stretched to the point of meaninglessness in the Premier League. There is hope for Palace at Turf Moor, though Burnley’s home form was what kept them up last season they are still searching for their first win in front of their own fans this time after going down to West Brom last month. But Burnley won home and away against Palace last season and are always confident under Sean Dyche. They have made a convincing start to this campaign – winning at Chelsea and drawing with Spurs at Wembley no less – and after strengthening their front line in summer may be looking at something a little more rewarding than the usual relegation battle.

The same could be said of Huddersfield, who have made even more of a flying start than Burnley thanks to that 3-0 opening day win at Selhurst Park. It is true that the Terriers have yet to play any of the biggest teams – their seven points to date came courtesy of Palace, Newcastle and Southampton – though unlike West Ham’s sieve-like defence they have impressed in recording three clean sheets. Manchester United are the only Premier League side who can make the same boast, and though a visit from Huddersfield must have looked like three points in the bag when the fixtures were first published, West Ham fans are now looking a long way up the table at their next opponents.

Yet while “winnable” might not be the correct expression to apply to Palace and West Ham’s upcoming fixtures against smallish but buoyant sides, the hierarchies at the two London clubs are still likely to regard them as “unlosable”. If you are in a relegation struggle after just three games, what does it say if you cannot beat Huddersfield at home or Burnley away? It is probably time for action on the managerial front, before the games against the Premier League’s big boys come along. Harsh but defensible.

It is a results game after all, as hundreds of managers on the verge of the sack have pointed out. There is no time for sentiment or patience if things are not working out on the pitch. Everyone knows the bottom line here, but three Premier League managers go into the weekend feeling it more than most. The simple rule is not so much three strikes and you are out – though De Boer in particular seems to have come close – but three blanks put an incredible amount of pressure on the fourth attempt, as does the knowledge that the sequence will most likely be brought to an end before a fifth.


Sullivan email raises big questions

David Sullivan’s emails have been published by Sky Sports in a continuing war of words between the co-owner and Sporting Lisbon.

But the emails still pose big questions and we come to the conclusion that David Sullivan would have been far better off remaining silent. There’s no mileage in this at all for West ham United.

We believe no good can come of this that the West Ham name is being done littele good.

The questions posed are obvious:

O Who were the emails sent to and who was copied into them?

O The name of the recipient of the email a c.c field is blacked out.

O Were they sent to an authorised individual within Sporting Lisbon or were they sent to the player’s agent.

The emails show offers on 10th and 11th August which appear to be an opening low offer of £23m, why is there no proof follow-up offers after that date? Is it because no formal offers were made after that date?

David Sullivan made the claim on the official club site “Late last night Sporting Lisbon made contact to accept the original offer, but unfortunately it was just too late in the day”

If that is true, where is the evidence of that communication and what format did it take?

The problem with releasing partial information to prove a point is it is a slippery slope and it unlikely to put this subject to bed anytime soon.


Sporting Lisbon to report West Ham to FIFA over alleged illegal approach of William Carvalho

The Hammers retained an interest in Carvalho throughout the summer window, but failed to land the anchorman

By Liam Prenderville, James Whaling

Sporting Lisbon will tell FIFA that West Ham made 'illegal approaches' for midfielder William Carvalho over the summer.

The Hammers retained an interest in Carvalho throughout the summer window, but failed to land the anchorman as they looked to bolster their midfield.

And now, Sporting are prepared to report the Irons over their interest in the 25-year-old.

West Ham themselves are considering legal action against Sporting president Bruno de Carvalho, who claimed the club lied over making a late bid for the midfielder.

David Gold and David Sullivan were also insulted by the Sporting chief, who labelled the West Ham owners the 'Dildo Brothers'.

But two e-mails have been obtained by Sky Sports, suggesting formal offers were actually made at the start of August.

The details of the bid are staggering however, with just £7.6m offered up front for the Euro 2016 winner.

According to the e-mails, West Ham were willing to cough up just £23m in three payments until August 2019.

A follow-up bid appears to have been made, including an optimistic add-on of West Ham qualifying for the Champions League, and a 10 percent sell-on clause.

The e-mails also include a threat from West Ham to pull out of the deal to "borrow" a player from PSG - likely to have been midfielder Grzegorz Krychowiak who went on to join West Brom.

It comes after De Carvalho called on West Ham fans to challenge the “Dildo Brothers” for what he described as “the truth” over the move for the midfielder.

Speaking to Sporting TV in Portugal, he said: “Where is it? Proof? Now, approaches, for sure. I’ve had them for almost the whole squad: West Ham supporters call Mr. David Sullivan and his brother, the Dildo Brothers…

“These messengers, these offended virgins, the president of West Ham… We must tell the truth!”


Has West Ham's best signing of the summer gone completely under the radar in Sead Haksabanovic?

Damien Lucas

West Ham United signed five players over the summer but you could be forgiven for thinking it was only four.

The Hammers are a club in crisis on and off the pitch.

Defeat in each of their opening three Premier League games has left Slaven Bilic's side pointless and propping up the table with a minus eight goal difference.

Indeed it may not even be 'Bilic's side' much longer with reports claiming co-owners David Sullivan and David Gold are ready to replace the Croatian with Rafa Benitez or Roberto Mancini.

Things had been looking promising at the beginning of August after the Hammers recruited Joe Hart, Pablo Zabaleta, Javier Hernandez and Marko Arnautovic to strengthen their first team.

But the doomed pursuit of William Carvalho and the fallout since has seen fans turn on the owners as well as Bilic.

Amidst all the doom and gloom, though, could the somewhat low key capture of Sead Haksabanovic from Swedish side Halmstads prove to be the best bit of business of the lot?

The diminutive 18-year-old has a tricky name and the skills to match but is yet to taste any first team action since signing for a paltry £3million.

Football fans are too cute nowadays to rely on a YouTube video showcasing the skills of a player.

But those who do take a look can't fail to be impressed with the ability the Montenegro international possesses.

For a central midfielder Haksabanovic knows where the goal is. From 46 games for Halmstads, the skilful playmaker has netted 10 goals by the age of 18 and plenty of assists along the way too. They are impressive stats for one so young and perhaps the reason West Ham have decided to take a chance on the youngster.

Manuel Lanzini injured again after a brief comeback cameo in the 3-0 defeat to Newcastle last time out and Marko Arnautovic suspended for the club's important first home game of the season against Huddersfield.

So with his job on the line could Bilic roll the dice on Haksabanovic in the hope his creative spark can provide the much needed enthusiasm, skill and playmaking ability missing from West Ham's play?

Who knows he could be just what the side needs to feed isolated striker Hernandez and turn the East Londoners' season around.

Stunning athletics bid could be good news for West Ham over London Stadium future

Damien Lucas

West Ham United could be offered hope by Birmingham's stunning bid to become the new home of UK Athletics.

A large section of West Ham United fans are unhappy with how the club's heralded move to the former Olympic Stadium has panned out so far.

The Hammers' move to Stratford from their beloved Upton Park was beset by problems from the start.

Ahead of the stadium move, Hammers fans were promised a genuine retractable seating solution and that West Ham fixtures would always take presidence in communications from the club.

In reality they have been left with a temporary lower tier built on a complex scaffolding which takes weeks to deconstruct and reconstruct between football and athletics mode each summer and having to wait until mid-September to play their first home game of the new season due to the IAAF World Championships being staged there.

The distance from the stands to the pitch is a major bone of contention for many fans with the bowl shape of the venue the biggest problem as the stadium was not built with football in mind.

Having signed a 99-year lease many supporters are disillusioned at the prospect of a long-term future at the ground in it's current state.

But there could be hope for the Hammers from Birmingham where officials are bidding to make a beautifully upgraded Alexander Stadium the home of UK Athletics, as reported by Birmingham Mail.

Birmingham and Liverpool are currently bidding to host the 2022 Commonwealth Games after Durban, South Africa, was stripped of the event, with the Commonwealth Games Federation saying it did not meet its criteria.

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport is expected to announce soon who will be its UK candidate.

And if Birmingham get the go-ahead the Alexander Stadium will be upgraded into a 40,000 seat arena - a fitting venue for some of the world’s leading track and field athletes.

Currently the Alexander Stadium has a 12,700 seat capacity and already hosts the British championships and team trials as well as international Diamond League contests and is the official headquarters of UK Athletics.

With such a low capacity the stadium is not seen as large enough to carry the torch from the Olympic Stadium and preserve the 2012 legacy.

But if Birmingham win the bid West Ham owners David Sullivan and David Gold may get the chance to buy the stadium outright - something Sullivan's son Dave has admitted is a possibility - and perhaps even redevelop it properly for football.

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

The Stoat 9:13 Thu Sep 7
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Will we ever have a season without our name being dragged through the mire FFS

BubblesCyprus 11:56 Thu Sep 7
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

Thanks Alan 11:25 Thu Sep 7
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Takashi Miike 11:14 Thu Sep 7

Takashi Miike 11:14 Thu Sep 7
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

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