WHO Poll
Q: 2020/2021 Where will we finish up this season?
a. Top Four, Champions League here we come
b. 5th-7th Europa League is well within our grasp
c. 8th to 14th anywhere in mid table is about right
d. We're in a dog fight before a ball has been kicked and we'll do well to finish 17th or just above
e. GSB have derailed our season before a ball has been kicked, the Championship beckons

Alan 1:20 Wed Nov 18
Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Former Manchester City and Liverpool striker Mario Balotelli has held talks with Championship strugglers Barnsley. The Italian, 30, is a free agent after having his contract with Bresica terminated over missed training sessions. (Sun)

Manchester City are ready to revive their interest in Barcelona striker Lionel Messi in January. The 33-year-old Argentine is out of contract at the end of the season so could be available for a cut-price fee. (Sun)

Schalke's 19-year-old German-born defender Malick Thiaw, who signed a new contract in the summer, says he is "flattered" by reports linking him with a January move to Liverpool. (Sport.de via Mirror)

Chelsea want to sign Borussia Dortmund and England midfielder Jude Bellingham, and will consider a bid for the 17-year-old instead of West Ham's England midfielder Declan Rice, 21. (Eurosport)

Manager Pep Guardiola is yet to decide on his future at Manchester City. His current deal runs out in the summer. (Goal)

Leicester are monitoring Portuguese left-back Nuno Mendes, 18, who has a buy-out clause of £40m at Sporting Lisbon. (Mail)

Chelsea goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga is willing to take a pay cut in order to secure a loan away from the club in January. The 26-year-old wants regular football to help secure his place in the Spain squad for Euro 2020. (Sun)

Manchester City will rival Bayern Munich in the race to sign 23-year-old Switzerland midfielder Denis Zakaria from Borussia Monchengladbach. (Calciomercato - in Italian)

Brazilian midfielder Willian will have to return a negative coronavirus test before he is allowed to resume training at Arsenal after the 32-year-old travelled to Dubai during the international break. (Telegraph)

Former Juventus midfielder Claudio Marchiso has urged Manchester United and France midfielder Paul Pogba, 27, to return to the Italian club. (Mirror)

Manchester United will prioritise player sales in January with England defender Phil Jones, 28, and the Argentine duo of goalkeeper Sergio Romero, 33, and 30-year-old defender Marcos Rojo, possible departures. (Manchester Evening News)

Wolves' contract negotiations with winger Adama Traore have stalled because the Spaniard is unhappy at his lack of playing time. The 24-year-old has previously been linked with Barcelona. (Goal)

West Ham have been offered the chance to sign Real Madrid and Spanish-Dominican forward Mariano Diaz, 27. (Mail)

Arsenal are considering a swap deal with Inter Milan which would see Denmark and former Tottenham midfielder Christian Eriksen, 28, join the Gunners and Swiss midfielder Granit Xhaka, 28, move to the Italian club. (Corriere dello Sport, via Talksport)

Arsenal are also in discussions to send French defender William Saliba on loan next season. The 19-year-old has yet to make his debut for the Gunners. (Evening Standard)

Former Chelsea manager Antonio Conte says he wanted to sign Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk and Inter Milan's Romelu Lukaku when he was at the club. (Telegraph)

Chelsea and France striker Olivier Giroud, 34, will look to leave the club in January if his playing time does not increase over the coming months. (The Athletic - subscription retired)

Arsenal will not be signing Mitchel Bergkamp - son of Gunners legend Dennis Bergkamp - despite the 22-year-old Dutchman spending a week on trial at the club. (Goal)


West Ham United chief says club losing two million pounds a match without fans

West Ham United are losing 2 million pounds ($2.7 million) a match with spectators barred from attending games amid the Covid-19 pandemic, the Premier League club's vice-chair Karren Brady has said.

Fans have not been allowed to attend matches since England's professional game restarted in June, leaving clubs in the lurch and lower league sides requiring a financial rescue package from the top flight.

"It's fatal for everybody. West Ham is losing 2 million pounds a match in lost ticket revenue and corporate revenue. Some clubs are losing as much as 10 million pounds a match," Brady told the BBC.

"You talk about the pyramid of football but there is also a pyramid within the Premier League.

"Right at the top you have clubs owned by sovereign states and right at the bottom you have those who are not.

"Everyone is suffering but just like smaller businesses, whether football or non-football, they don't have many cash reserves and that is what is happening to the smaller football clubs."

Brady said she was frustrated because outdoor stadiums are closed to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus but matches were being screened at cinemas, adding that the "atmosphere is suffering" without fans in attendance.

"We couldn't have our supporters in which is literally why football exists but you could watch a game at the cinema, the O2 was open, the Royal Albert Hall was open, the London Palladium was open but open-aired, Covid-free stadiums aren't," she added.

"We are told it is early next March before we let supporters in.

"We have to do everything in terms of making people feel safe, giving the government confidence that we can provide these Covid-19 safe stadiums."


West Ham offered chance to sign Real Madrid forward Mariano Diaz on loan as Zinedine Zidane gives green light to let out-of-favour striker leave

West Ham have been offered the chance to sign Real Madrid striker Mariano Diaz
The 27-year-old forward will be allowed to leave Real on an initial loan
He was offered around to clubs in the summer with West Brom showing interest
However, Mariano decided against a Baggies switch but could move to London

By Simon Jones

West Ham have been offered the chance to sign Real Madrid forward Mariano Diaz.

The 27-year-old, who joined from Lyon in 2018 for £21m, is available potentially on an initial loan and was offered around to clubs in the summer with Zinedine Zidane willing to let him go.

West Brom were among those to show an interest but Mariano was unsure on a move to a newly-promoted side. However, a move to London and West Ham could carry more appeal.

Meanwhile, the Hammers are also eyeing up a move for Philadelphia Union left back Kai Wagner.

Wagner has been one of the MLS's standout performers and is valued around £3.5million which again fits well within the clubs’ tight budgets.

The east London club face competition from Fulham, however, who are also interested in the German defender.


‘Very good’: Fernando Morientes is a big fan of reported £30m West Ham target

Danny Owen

What do Wesley Sneijder, Rafael Van der Vaart, Walter Samuel, Arjen Robben, Esteban Cambiasso and arguably even James Rodriguez have in common?

They are living proof of the fact that, just because things don’t work out at Real Madrid, that does not mean you cannot thrive away from the glare of the Bernabeu microscope.

Samuel, Cambiasso and 2010 Ballon d’Or candidate Sneijder were crucial cogs in the Inter Milan team who conquered Italy and Europe under Jose Mourinho a decade ago after all.

Arjen Robben, meanwhile, transformed Bayern Munich from perennial nearly-men into a continental force while Van de Vaart, during his brief but glorious time at Tottenham, helped lay the foundations for the Mauricio Pochettino and Jose Mourinho eras.

So, with Defensa Central linking Mariano Diaz with a move to the Premier League, West Ham fans should not for one second ponder on his enduring struggles at the Santiago Bernabeu; the fact he has started three La Liga matches in two-and-a-bit seasons while losing the iconic number seven shirt to Eden Hazard.

Mariano is no flop. He is merely a victim of Karim Benzema’s late-blooming brilliance; a casualty of Zinedine Zidane’s often restrictive selection policy.

In fact, it is only two years since Mariano was scoring goals for fun at a Lyon side who accumulated 78 points in Ligue 1, his ruthless two-footedness ensuring everyone on the banks of the Rhone forgot all about departed skipper Alexandre Lacazette.

In fact, it was those 21 goals in 45 games, those emphatic thumping finishes, those gravity-defying, Ronaldo-esque headers, that convinced Real Madrid to exercise the £30 million buy-back clause in Mariano’s contract after one season in France.

“Mariano is a traditional number nine, a finisher, the player that Real Madrid needed,” former Madrid hero Fernando Morientes told AS in 2018 of a man who, albeit briefly, took over Cristiano Ronaldo’s number seven shirt.

“He is very complete and very good. Madrid didn’t have the type of pure, central striker that reminds me of my time. He is a player who, in the penalty area, doesn’t forgive.”

Mariano has had his moments in Madrid, a Classico clincher against Barcelona living long in the memory. But whether he can embark on a James Rodriguez-esque renaissance in England remains to be seen.

West Ham would be taking a risk signing a striker without a league start since May 2019. But, during that one fleeting spell at Lyon, Mariano proved that he has the potential to be one of Europe’s elite centre-forwards.

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

bill green 6:21 Wed Nov 18
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
ted fenton 1:39 Wed Nov 18

ted fenton 1:39 Wed Nov 18
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan 1:21 Wed Nov 18

Texas Iron 1:35 Wed Nov 18
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Thanks Alan 1:21 Wed Nov 18
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

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