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Alan 1:22 Sat Oct 21
Saturday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Barcelona are preparing a January move for Manchester United midfielder Ander Herrera, 28. (Don Balon, via Daily Express)

United will trigger a one-year option on Spain international Herrera's contract if he fails to agree new terms by the end of the year. (Manchester Evening News)

Barcelona will make a final attempt to sign Liverpool and Brazil midfielder Philippe Coutinho in the January transfer window. (Daily Mirror)

Reds manager Jurgen Klopp says the club are striving to create circumstances that ensure 25-year-old Coutinho wants to stay at Anfield beyond this season. (Telegraph)

Germany midfielder Mesut Ozil, 29, wants to join Manchester United when his deal with Arsenal expires at the end of the season. (Daily Mail)

Ozil has not held talks about a new Gunners contract since March but has also not told anybody at the club he wants to move to Old Trafford. (Sun)

However, Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is confident Ozil will remain "100% professional". (Sky Sports)

Leicester City's hierarchy will meet former Southampton boss Claude Puel as they search for a new manager after sacking Craig Shakespeare. (Daily Mail)

Tottenham striker Harry Kane, 24, says he wants to be a one-club man, despite interest in the England international from Real Madrid. (Daily Mirror)

Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino wants to sign Everton's 23-year-old England midfielder Ross Barkley in January because of the club's mounting injury problems. (Daily Mirror)

Barcelona may make a move for AC Milan and Portugal striker Andre Silva, 21, who is also a target for Arsenal.(Sun)

Burnley manager Sean Dyche will not "run away" from Turf Moor, but cannot say for definite he will not leave the club. (Guardian)

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho expects striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, 36, to return from injury before the end of the year. (Telegraph)

Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester City are considering making a move for 17-year-old French forward Lenny Pintor, who plays for second-tier side Brest. (Sun)

Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder has denied there is a release clause in the new contract signed by 20-year-old midfielder David Brooks, who is the subject of interest from Liverpool. (Daily Express)

Atletico Madrid striker Diego Costa has been getting back into shape in Fernando Torres' gym after leaving Chelsea. (Sun)

Liverpool and Germany midfielder Emre Can, 23, says he does not lack commitment due to his contract impasse with the Reds. (Daily Mirror)

Australian film producer Bruce Davey has held talks with Crystal Palace chairman Steve Parish about buying a stake in the club. (Times - subscription required)

Middlesbrough winger Stewart Downing, 33, says he was not to blame for the club sacking Aitor Karanka last season and, if he had "known what it was going to be like" following his return to the Teesside outfit, he would not have come back. (Daily Star)

Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe hopes a chance meeting with boxer George Groves will inspire his players after a poor start to the season. (Daily Star)

Mauricio Pochettino says his Tottenham line-up against Real Madrid surprised even his close friends. (Sun)

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola says it is not possible for his side to remain unbeaten in the Premier League this season. (Times - subscription required)

Tottenham striker Harry Kane met another prolific goalscorer on Friday...

The best of Friday's gossip

Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil, 29, has told team-mates he will sign for Manchester United. (Daily Mirror)

Real Madrid are prepared to offer forward Karim Benzema, 29, to help push through a deal to sign Tottenham's 24-year-old striker Harry Kane. (El Gol Digital, via Daily Express)

Manchester United are expected to extend 28-year-old midfielder Ander Herrera's contract and also remain hopeful of persuading midfielder Marouane Fellaini, 29, to stay. (Daily Express)

Burnley manager Sean Dyche has not ruled himself out of the running for the Leicester job. (Daily Mirror)


Glenn Murray’s double for Brighton puts West Ham’s Slaven Bilic on the rack

Jacob Steinberg at the London Stadium

David Sullivan’s belief in morality will be severely tested after this humiliation. When West Ham United’s co-owner appeared on television before kick-off, he pinpointed a desire to do “what’s right” as the reason for backing Slaven Bilic when speculation over the manager’s future mounted last month. By full-time, however, those noble sentiments had a hollow feel. Chairmen tend not to worry about shows of loyalty when they see their side display the tactical cohesion of a pub team.

While the anger raining down from the stands was a form of torture for Bilic – whose job must be hanging by a thread after this defeat – it was music to Brighton & Hove Albion’s ears. They have waited a long time to experience the feeling of winning away in the top flight – 34 years to be precise – and how they cherished putting that statistic to bed at the London Stadium, executing Chris Hughton’s immaculate plan to perfection.

On 1 March 1983 Brighton won 2-1 at Swansea City in the old First Division. The scoreline was far more emphatic here and the harsh reality for Bilic is that Brighton, up to 10th after this victory, could have helped themselves to more than three goals. In the end they settled for Glenn Murray opening his account for the season and José Izquierdo scoring for the first time since a £16m move from Club Brugge.

“I’ve been around enough to know this is the type of division where you can lose three, four or five games on the spin,” Hughton said. Brighton’s manager was talking about whether his team had altered perceptions of themselves but it was a line that felt pertinent in the context of West Ham’s display. After starting the season with three straight defeats West Ham had responded to adversity by picking up eight points from five matches. Bilic was entitled to think that they were turning the corner. He saw encouraging signs in training during the week. “We thought this was going to be the game to lift us up the table,” he said.

That, unfortunately, was not the prelude to Bilic lavishing praise on his players. Instead he was ashen-faced and downbeat as he analysed the shambles he had just witnessed. He accepted the blame. “I don’t want to hide or run away,” he said. “It is my responsibility. Of course I can’t be happy with our performance. With the greatest respect it is one of those games where you are expecting to win.”

He quickly clarified that remark. “It is not expecting the win will come if you only show up on the pitch,” Bilic said. “I didn’t see that we didn’t try.” But he did see flaws. He pointed to too much ordinary play in the final third, criticising his forwards for being too passive, while there were gaping holes in West Ham’s defence.

The onus was on the hosts to seize the initiative. Instead Brighton took control, pressing high and passing with pleasing crispness and intent, threatening on the right thanks to Bruno’s overlapping runs beyond Anthony Knockaert. Their boldness paid off when Murray, capitalising on lazy marking from Pedro Obiang, glanced Pascal Gross’s free-kick past Joe Hart in the 10th minute.

West Ham toiled as they sought to overcome Brighton’s diligence and organisation but they would end the evening without forcing Maty Ryan to make a noteworthy save. Manuel Lanzini struggled to shake off Dale Stephens and Davy Propper, Michail Antonio’s end product was wayward and Javier Hernández was isolated against the excellent Lewis Dunk and Shane Duffy.

The growing frustration took on an extra dimension when Brighton, satisfied that West Ham had little to offer without the suspended Andy Carroll’s battering ram qualities, attacked shortly before half-time. Moments after Hart made a fine save to deny Murray at the end of a flowing counterattack, Izquierdo gathered possession on the left, stepped past Obiang and aimed for the far corner from 20 yards. Hart got a hand to the Colombian winger’s bending effort, but managed only to push it into the corner of the net.

Bilic responded by tweaking his system at half-time, replacing Cheikhou Kouyaté with Andre Ayew, but there was a whiff of desperation about throwing on another forward so early. The change had no effect. West Ham were still a confused mess, bereft of wit or spark, and Brighton remained comfortable and dangerous.

The home side’s difficulties were summed up when Marko Arnautovic, their £24m summer signing, was jeered off in the 74th minute. Not that the departure of their record buy led to an improvement. A minute after Arnautovic’s withdrawal, Pablo Zabaleta’s trip on Murray allowed the Brighton striker to complete West Ham’s misery by sending Hart the wrong way from 12 yards. “The board will do what they are going to do,” Bilic said. “It’s their decision.”

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

Takashi Miike 10:36 Sat Oct 21
Re: Saturday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

COOL HAND LUKE 7:27 Sat Oct 21
Re: Saturday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Al...

Christ... last night was as bad as it comes, and I've had decades of 'bad' to choose from...

ted fenton 2:10 Sat Oct 21
Re: Saturday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan 1:43 Sat Oct 21

Thanks Alan 1:43 Sat Oct 21
Re: Saturday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

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