Saturday, February 28, 2009

West Ham News on Saturday

The Mirror quotes Craig Bellamy as saying he left West Ham because City have more ambition. However, according to The Mail, Gianfranco Zola doesn't envy City's spending power.

The West Ham official website says Junior Stanislas aims to get into the West Ham first team by the end of the season.

"I travelled with the first team the other day," said Stanislas. "I want to be on the bench, get some game time and come on and get five minutes here and there and get myself in the picture. I am training with the first team. It is good. I was a bit slow to start with but obviously training with those players can only make you better."

Danny Gabbidon is getting frustrated with his continual injury problems,

"Hopefully in a month I may be running and closer to training and then I can incorporate a few more targets and goals into my programme.

Friday, February 27, 2009

West Ham vs Man City - The Predictions

Shaun Wright-Phillips is suspended for City and Gelson Fernandes remains doubtful with a hamstring strain. Noble is suspended for West Ham (even though Sky have him down as a likely starter).

City have only managed one victory in 13 attempts away from home this season. However City are unbeaten in their last five games against West Ham.

Lawro predicts we will lose. I nearly choked on my cornflakes! Who would have thought it. He seems to think that Noble's suspension could make all the difference.

Lawro predicts a 0-1 West Ham loss

Sky think things look ominous for West Ham after poor results in their last two games. They also think that Bellamy could be a danger with his habit of scoring against his previous clubs. However they also note City's appalling away record.

Sky predict a 2-2 draw

Setanta think Robinho and Bellamy have formed a strong partnership. They also note that West Ham have not been banging them in of late.

Setanta go for a 1-1 draw

Blades Want £45 Million

According to The Sun Sheffield United want £45.5 million compensation from West Ham for not being good enough to play in the Premier League. Despite the collapse of the global economy and stagflation The Blades have now added another 50% on top of the £30 million they were claiming before.

However maybe the tide of press opinion has now turned against Sheff Utd. Today even The Mail, who have run an unceasing two year campaign against West Ham, seem to have turned against the Yorkshire club. One headline in The Mail read,

"Maybe whining Blades boss Blackwell can blame West Ham for FA Cup defeat and sue the referee for loss of income"

The article then went on to say,

"Maybe they should work out how much they have lost from going out of the competition (the FA Cup) and sue the official for it ... Asking Sheffield United to find a sense of proportion, it seems, is asking just a little too much."

Thursday, February 26, 2009

My Knee Jerk Reaction

Last night's performance was truly embarrassing. However the lack of fire power up front has been apparent since Bellamy left. West Ham have now scored 2 goals in five games and it is hard to see at the moment where the goals are going to come from.

I think last night we saw some of the weaknesses of the current squad. We have no width, no depth to the squad and no plan b. Di Michele's confidence looks completely shot, Tristan's legs seems to have gone and Sears looks like he still isn't quite ready to step up.

So is it time to let Savio off the leash? They say if you are good enough you are old enough and what we've seen of Savio so far is that he does seem good enough.

This Saturday's game against City is really important now. A win against City would restore some confidence to the team. I'd like to see Savio start.

Come on let's give the boy a go!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Boro 2 West Ham 0

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Boro vs West Ham

West Ham will be without the injured James Collins for this match but Lucas Neill is back from suspension. Boro will be without Didier Digard.

West Ham have now not won in four games and Boro have not won in any of their last six. Gianfranco Zola, however, insists that this is one game that West Ham want to win,

"It means a lot, an awful lot," said Zola. "It is a fantastic competition and some say it is losing something but that makes no sense.

"We have to make sure everyone values it very much. It's unique. If I can win this as a manager then that would be great. I always say it was one of my best achievements to win it as a player."

Setanta believe that Boro's Adam Johnson will be the key player in a fiercely contested tie.

Setanta predict a 2-1 loss for West Ham

West Ham Almost Sold Collison

The Daily Mirror seems to be the only newspaper to be reporting on West Ham this week. Today they report that West Ham almost sold Jack Collison to Peterborough for just £300,000 in the summer.

Collison has since become a first team regular and Gianfranco Zola thinks he will only get better as a player,

"Jack has been a real surprise for me - not just because of his qualities but also his personality. He will be a very important player in this country and for West Ham for a long time."

Monday, February 23, 2009

Collins Out for a Month

The West Ham official website says that James Collins is likely to be out for four weeks. Collins had an MRI scan this afternoon which confirmed a hamstring tear in his left.

James Tomkins is likely to be Collins' automatic replacement but Zola also has other options. Radoslav Kovac can play at centre back as could Lucas Neill, with Jonathan Spector replacing him at right back.

West Ham Still Aiming for Europe

The Daily Mirror say that Blackburn Rovers, Everton and West Ham are keen on Wolves' £2.5m-rated right-back Kevin Foley. He is out of contract at the end of next season but Wolves are about to open talks to hand him a new deal. (I smell the rumour spin of an agent)

The Mirror also quotes Jonathan Spector, who believes West Ham can still qualify for Europe,

"We're not ruling Europe out, even though we lost. We were hoping for seventh before the game. We've been on a fantastic run of wins and a few draws and we certainly believe we can get back on track.

"We just see this as a minor setback and we're ready to go again."

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Dyer Undergoes More Surgery

Gianfranco Zola has confirmed that Kieron Dyer has undergone more surgery. The West Ham manager says however that Dyer should be back training again soon.

"Kieron had another operation which went very well and it wasn't a big thing," said Zola.

"He is already doing something with the physio again and should be available soon."

West Ham Gossip

James Ciollins is due to undergo a scan today on the hamstring injury that forced him out of yesterday's game. Zola said,

"I do not know how long he is going to be out but it does not look good. He will have a scan tomorrow. It is a pity that we will lose him for a while as James has been playing well."

According to The Times Claudio Ranieri believes Gianfranco Zola would be the perfect manager for Chelsea. (yawn)

There isn't much news around about West Ham today, except for news of some ex-players.

Nolberto Solano was rushed to hospital after feeling unwell following Universitario's 1-0 win over San Lorenzo in the Libertadores Cup on Thursday. He was later released after being treated for dehydration.

"It was dehydration, I was suffering from a lot of cramp and as a precaution they brought me here. But now I feel alright."

Ian Bishop has started the 'Bishbosh' Soccer Academy in Parkland, Florida, where he will coach under-12 and under-13 boys' teams on a weekly basis.

According to The Independent Saint Etienne have made a film called ‘What Have You Done Today, Mervyn Day?’ depicting the industrial wasteland of London’s Lower Lea Valley before its transformation for the 2012 Olympics.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Bolton 2 West Ham 1

West Ham started quite brightly but were undone by three minutes of bad defending and bad luck. In the 9th minute Collison gave a foul away, a few yards outside the West Ham area and central to the goal. From the free-kick Taylor curled the ball away from Green and into the top right of the goal.

A minute after that and Davies slid in between Upson and Collins, to meet a cross, beating both to the ball to get Bolton's second goal from 8 yards. Another minute later and Collins was forced off the field with what could be a knee or hamstring injury.

In the 38th minute West Ham had a glorious effort to pull one back when Noble played Di Michele clear on goal but from six yards out, and just the goalie to beat, Di Michele sent the ball high and wide. In the minutes leading up to half time West Ham piled some pressure on the Bolton goal but never looked like scoring.

At the start of the second half West Ham won a corner. From the corner Tomkins headed goalwards from 7 yards, the ball flew at Cole who flicked the ball on from 3 yards only for Taylor to head over on the goal-line.

In the 61st minute Savio came on for Collinson. Then in the 65th minute Parker drove forward, passed to Cole on the edge of the area. Cole's touch was heavy and the ball rolled out to the right wing. Spector ran onto the ball and crossed the ball low into the area. Parker, still driving forward, ran into the six yard box and drove the ball home.

In the 74th minute Parker seemed to be pushed over in the box but managed to still chest the ball to Di Michele, Di Michele dribbled past Jaaskelainen and shot, only for Cahill to clear the ball off the line. In the 82nd minute Parker passed to Behrami in the box but his 10 yard shot was easily saved.

In the 89th minute the ball fell to Sears just outside the box and he turned and shot first time. However his shot was easily saved. and that was about it.

I think Bolton had two shots (and two attempted passes) in the whole game whereas West Ham must have had about 13-15 shots. Which tells its own story. Hopefully Zola will have the team in banjo and barn door training for the next two days.

Bolton vs West Ham - Live Streaming

LiveFooty have a SopCast and a TVUPlayer stream of this game.

FSi have links to:

Star Sports: TVU Player, Sopcast, PPMate, TVAnts, TVAnts, UUSee
Fox Soccer Channel: TVU Player, Veetle, Sopcast, TVAnts

Full radio commentary is available on BBC London 94.9FM and BBC London DAB.

Zola Linked with Chelsea - Again

I said that this story would keep resurfacing until the summer but I thought at least one week would pass before another journalist in desperation dragged it out of the bottom drawer:-

According to The Daily Express Chelsea are poised to move for West Ham manager Gianfranco Zola and his assistant Steve Clarke after Guus Hiddink stressed he would not look to extend his Stamford Bridge stay after the summer.

In an even worse example of journalism The Express even try to suggest that when Zola says, "I have no intention of walking out on West Ham," he really means he intends to walk out on West Ham and take the Chelsea job.

Friday, February 20, 2009

What's Soccer?

I understand our American visitors sometimes get confused.

Hopefully this picture will explain things a bit more simply:

From the National Handegg League (NHL).

Bolton vs West Ham - The Predictions

West Ham will be without the injured Cole and suspended Lucas Neill. Spector may be used as Neill's replacement and either Tristan and Sears will replace Cole. For Bolton Johan Elmander is back in contention after being sidelined by a hamstring injury in recent weeks, while Gavin McCann has recovered from a broken toe.

Bolton have won only one of their last seven Premier League matches; West Ham have lost just one of their last seven. However West Ham have never won at the Reebok Stadium and have suffered six defeats and two draws in the last eight visits in all competitions.

Lawro grudgingly acknowledges that 'West Ham have been on a super run under Gianfranco Zola and have come a long way in a short time.' He still can't bring himself to predict anything but a West Ham loss.

Lawro predicts a 2-1 loss for West Ham

Sky point out that West Ham have suffered just one defeat in their last ten outings in all competitions and have not lost away from home in eight games. Bolton, on the other hand, have lost four of their last six on home turf.

Sky predict West Ham will draw 1-1

Setanta say that Bolton's one win and one draw in the last eight games is relegation form. West Ham however 'have grown and grown in stature.' For the second week running Setanta then pull a Lawro by ignoring what they have said and the form of both sides.

Setanta predict a 2-1 West Ham loss

Pawel Interested in West Ham Move

Earlier this week there were reports that West Ham had been watching striker Pawel Brozek in the recent Poland vs Wales friendly. Sky Sports are now reporting that the Polish striker's agent says he is keen on a move to West Ham.

"I have heard the rumours about interest from West Ham and I believe they watched him playing for Poland," Osuch told

"Of course he would be interested in a move to West Ham. They are a nice club, they are in London and they are playing good football under Zola. Pawel is the most talked about player in Poland and there are a lot of clubs interested in him from Russia, Germany, France and England.

"He will stay at Wisla until the summer and then we will see what happens."

Dean Ashton doesn't need to worry too much as Gianfranco Zola has assured him he still a part of his plans.

"For me it is unfortunate because I have not had him in my side before. It's a big blow because I know how important he can be for us.

"I'm sorry especially for him though, being out so long is not an easy thing. He is one of those players whose qualities would be perfect for this team.

"I'm sure he would like to be involved, but when he comes back he will make up for it I'm sure."

Green & Neill Offered New West Ham Contracts

West Ham manager Gianfranco Zola has said that Robert Green and Lucas Neill are close to signing new contracts with the club.

Scott Duxbury recently spoke of the clubs desire to secure the long term services of Parker, Upson and Green. Scott Parker has signed a new contract with the club and it looks like Green and Neill could soon follow.

"Robert is due to sign a new deal and we are also speaking to Lucas. I think they are happy to stay," said Zola. "I think the club have tried to make Lucas happy. He's done a lot for us this year. We want to extend his deal."

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Faubert a Stop Gap at Real Madrid

West Ham fans who were hopeful that Julien Faubert's loan move to Real Madrid might be made permanent at the end of the season may be disappointed. Sergio Ramos has hinted that Real Madrid are only using Julien Faubert as a temporary stopgap.

"A right winger was missing, and we needed a player that wasn’t cup-tied in the Champions League. We play him when needed and he won’t necessarily play every game.

"Tactically, when we will need to play someone at right midfield, he could be an option."

West Ham United reserve team captain Tony Stokes has signed on loan to Hungarian team Ujpest FC until the end of the season. Ujpest FC are currently second in the Hungarian league. Stokes said of the loan deal,

"They have set up me up with an apartment and a car, which has been great. Budapest is also a beautiful place. I never realised how nice it was before I arrived. There is another English player called Scott Malone who has joined them from Wolves so it's good to have him there."

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

West Ham Scout Striker

According to Setanta West Ham sent chief scout Roger Cross to the recent friendly between Poland and Wales to cast his eye over Wisla Krakow attacker Pawel Brozek.

According to Setanta Cross was impressed and and has filed a favourable report to manager Gianfranco Zola and technical director Gianluca Nani. They claim that West Ham will continue to monitor the Wisla star for the remainder of the campaign ahead of a possible bid in the summer.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Boro vs West Ham Moved

West Ham's FA Cup fifth-round replay at Middlesbrough has been switched to Wednesday 25th February.

The game will start at 8.10pm and will be broadcast live on ITV1. The winners of the game will be rewarded with a quarter -final tie away to Everton.

Zola Says Lay Off Luis, Ashton Says Europe

Dean Ashton says West Ham could earn a UEFA Cup spot this season,

"With the position we're in at the moment, I don't see why we can't strive for Europe," Ashton said.

"The team has been doing really well. Slowly but surely, the manager and Steve Clarke have really put their mark on the side. You can tell that by the way the team are playing and passing the ball about."

Gianfranco Zola says that the fans should give Boa-Morte a chance.

"I just don't understand the boos from the fans for him. He has been fantastic for us and every time he has played he has done a fantastic job for the team," Zola said.

"In the dressing room he has been great, too. Every manager wants a player like him in their squad. He does not deserve the treatment he is getting right now and, of course, it affects him - it would affect anybody."

Monday, February 16, 2009

Cole Out for Two Weeks

According to Setanta the X-ray on Carlton Cole's ankle, "revealed that there are no broken bones and now, subject to a scan, the club hope that he will be back in action in just two weeks."

The site says that Luis Boa Morte has also been ruled out for a month with the groin injury he suffered against Boro at the weekend.

West Ham to Offer New Contracts

Sky say that Gianfranco Zola wants Neill, Upson and Green to sign new contracts with West Ham in the next few weeks. Zola said,

"There are players that have been very important this season on and off the pitch," he said. They are the core of this team and I believe they can be the core of this team for a long time.

The club knows this and they are offering them contracts and they deserve that. It is good for stability. They are positive players and they will help us to build something important.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

West Ham in the Sunday Papers

The News of the World say Lucas Neill has no plans to leave West Ham when his contract ends in the summer.

ITV Sport say West Ham West Ham striker Dean Ashton has admitted he will not be back in action until the start of next season. He hasn't played since injuring his ankle in training last September. He recently had a second operation on the injury but has now admitted that Hammer's boss Gianfranco Zola will have to do without him for the rest of the season.

Various - West Ham manager Gianfranco Zola is waiting on news of Carlton Cole's injury,

"We don't know how bad it is yet," said Zola. "He is going to have an X-ray in the next 24 hours and hopefully it will be just a twist."

However it does seem that Luis Boa Morte suffered a hamstring tear in yesterday's game.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Ashton Out for Season have a video interview with Dean Ashton in which the West Ham striker admits he is unlikely to play again this season. Ashton said that after a 'small operation' on his ankle,

"I think I'm looking to get myself back for preseason."

West Ham 1 Middlesbrough 1

West Ham started with just one change to the team; Boa Morte came in for the hamstrung Behrami. In the first ten minutes West Ham definitley missed Behrami's industry and Boro were able to create a couple of good chances.

The first chance fell to Johnson in the 2nd minute but his 22 yard effort flew wide of the right post. The second in the 10th minute was a Downing effort from just outside the box that just missed wide right.

The next ten minutes were all West Ham as the home side won five corners and forced three saves from the keeper. Noble had two shots saved but the best effort was from Collins. His 25 yards rasping effort was well saved at the expense of a corner.

With West Ham hammering the Boro penalty area Boro managed to break quickly in the 21st minute. The ball was crossed from deep on the right wing behind the West Ham defense. The ball found its way through to Downing running in on the far post to head the ball in from 4 yards.

In the 25th minute Di Michele teed himself up just outside the area and volleyed the ball just wide of the left hand post. In the 33rd minute Carlton Cole was forced off with an ankle injury and was replaced by Tristan.

In the 36th minute a poor Collins header led to an Alves shot from the edge of the area but the shot was weak and wide. A minute later and Boa Morte got to the touchline in the Boro box and crossed for Noble. Noble's shot from seven yards was deflected by the keeper to Collinson who then shot wide from four yards.

In the 44th minute West Ham broke quickly and the move ended with Di Michele sending Tristan free into the Boro area only for Tristan to shoot high and wide.

Not long after the second half started Boa Morte got a tap on the head and indicated to the bench he wished to be replaced. Sears came on for Boa Morte and in the 54th minute Sears had West Ham's first shot of the half from the edge of the area but the ball flew way over the bar.

In the 57th minute Alves was played clear at the edge of the West Ham box but he shot high and wide when he had players in support. Two minutes later Alves had a harder chance wide right of the penalty area and his shot flew across the box to miss wide left. Three minutes after that Alves ran at Collins and Upson and fired low from the edge of the area, forcing a save from Green.

In the 69th minute Tristan did well to beat two defenders in the Boro box but from four yards he ended up shotting weakly at the keeper. In the 71st minute, at the other end, Downing shot from 25 yards and Green just managed to save it diving to his right. A minute later and Ilunga did well to get to the byline and pull it back for Di Michele but he blazed the ball over from 8 yards when he should have scored.

In the 75th minute the ball was played into the box and fell to Sears who shot weakly from 7 yards. In the 82nd minute West Ham won a freekick on the left wing. The ball was played into the box where Ilunga headed home from six yards.

West Ham never then looked like snatching the winner. It wasn't the greatest performance by West Ham and in the end if either team had been a bit more clincal in front of goal they could have settled this tie.

Depending on TV covererage the replay is due to be played a week on Tuesday.

The only real positive out of today's game (apart from the fact we live to fight another day) is that Savio does look very promising.

West Ham vs Boro - Live Streaming

FSi have a lot of streams for today's West Ham game in most formats, including this Flash player stream.

Full-match radio commentary is also available on BBC London 94.9FM and BBC Tees 95FM

For those of you stuck at home in front of the computer it might also be worth keeping an eye on #whulive on Twitter where fans at the game could be posting live photographs and thoughts on the game.

West Ham News on Saturday

According to Deloitte West Ham, Aston Villa & Everton are just outside the top 20 Richest football clubs in the world.

Harry Harris said on 'Five Live' this morning that he 'could exclusively reveal' that Zola and Clarke were interviewed at Chelsea last week and would be appointed to manage Chelsea next season. I guess with Hiddink only appointed until the end of the season. we shall see a lot more of this 'exclusive' speculation between now and the summer.

I liked this video from Part of the Game following a West Ham fan in the last round of the FA Cup.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Parker Signs New West Ham Deal

Scott Parker has signed a new contract that commits him to West Ham until the summer of 2013. Parker said on signing his new contract,

"There has been a lot of negative things written, saying there was a crisis and all of that. This shows that West Ham are in a position to keep their players when others want them and as a player and for the fans, that is a great thing.

The manager showed a real desire to keep me. He sees me as a massive part of the squad and that meant a lot to me, especially when there were things being written everywhere. So I am delighted to sign."

Scott Duxbury said,

"Added to the absolute assurances Gianfranco has given fans this week about his long-term commitment, this agreement is a further sign that we can all look forward. Today's news underlines that a lot of nonsense has been written and said about this club in recent weeks.

It is clear that even if external forces try to destabilise us, nothing will stand in the way of our football project and our efforts to bring success to this club and our supporters."

West Ham vs Boro - the predictions

Middlebrough are without Chris Riggott, Jeremie Aliadiere and Andrew Taylor for this game. Valon Behrami and James Collins both missed midweek internationals, but should be available for West Ham.

Lawro seems to be parodying himself now, he says of this game, "The Hammers are much improved and Boro don't know where their next win is coming from, so I'm going for a draw!". Yeah competely makes sense. How many games has Lawro gone since he predicted a West Ham win? Surely he will get fed up of being wrong eventually.

Lawro predicts a 1-1 draw for West Ham

Sky point out that Boro have gone 13 games in the league without a win, whereas West Ham are in the middle of a purple patch.

Sky make no prediction?

Setanta claim that despite floundering in the league Boro have good form in the cup (someone might want to tell Setanta that everyone left in the cup is unbeaten in the cup). Setanta point out that Boro have failed to beat West Ham in five attempts and have now gone five games without scoring, then Sentata do a Lawro and predict a draw.

Setanta predict a 1-1 draw for West Ham

Thursday, February 12, 2009

More Surgery for Ashton

The West Ham official website has announced that Dean Ashton has undergone further surgery on his ankle. The site says no date has been set for his return after a "very successful" operation this week.

Dean Ashton himself said,

"I am working hard and looking to be firing on all cylinders when I come back."

I assume this means we won't be seeing Ashton again this season. Now does anyone know what has happened to Dyer's recovery?

West Ham for England

Well done to Upson, Green and Cole.

Green and Upson outshone James and Jagielka by a country mile. Cole replaced Agbonlahor for 15 minutes and probably saw more of the ball than Agbonlahor did in 75 minutes and was a little unlucky not to score.

Mind you - I'm biased.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

West Ham Sign Sp#rs Crock

West Ham have signed Republic of Ireland youth international striker Terry Dixon on a three-year contract.

Dixon was released by Sp~rs last year after concerns over past problems with his right knee. However Dixon has been working with West Ham on his rehabilitation and obviously has done enough to earn himself a contract with the club.

The 19-year-old forward said on signing for West Ham,

"My aims for this season are to get matches under my belt for the reserves and if I do well there, hopefully I can get into the first-team squad. I want to repay the faith the club have shown in me, if not this season then the season after."

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

West Ham vs Man Utd - Live Twitter

Benji Lanyado attempted to live blog West Ham's game against Manchester United at the weekend using Twitter and Twitpic (coverage here). If you have a Twitter account you can add to the live fun by adding the tag #whulive to a Tweet made during the game.

Inspired by Benji's efforts I wondered if Google Static Maps could help in providing instant illustrations of goals scored.

Here's my efforts (shame it's not a West Ham goal).

A. In the 62nd minute Paul Scholes passed across field to
B. R Giggs who ran with the ball into
C. the area before scoring in the bottom right corner from 12 yards

If anyone is interested you can follow me on Twitter at However - a word of warning - my Twitterings are strictly West Ham free.

West Ham Internationals

Jordan Spence is in the England Under-19 squad for tonight's friendly against Spain.

Cole, Green and Upson are all in the full England squad for the game against Spain in Seville tomorrow.

Valon Behrami should play for Switzerland against Bulgaria. Radoslav Kovac could play for the Czech Republic against Morocco. Lucas Neill will play for Australia against Japan. Jack Collison may figure for Wales against Poland (Collins has pulled out of the Welsh squad).

Zola Tells West Ham He is Staying

Despite Chelsea informing all and sundry that they intend to appoint a manager who is not currently managing another club everyone seems to be linking Gianfranco Zola with the job any way.

Sky Sports News have "learnt that Zola has personally reassured West Ham chief executive Scott Duxbury that he remains firmly committed to the Upton Park outfit."

Monday, February 09, 2009

Collins Injury Worry

It seems that Juande Ramos has discovered that Julien Faubert is not quite as good as he seemed to be be in that YouTube video he watched. After Faubert came on for 30 minutes as a substitute for Real Madrid against Racing Santander he said,

"He didn’t show anything ... We would be better not to speak about his display."

James Collins has pulled out of the Wales squad with a knee problem. Hopefully this is just precautionary and he will be fit for next weekend's fifth round FA Cup clash with Middlesbrough.

West Ham manager Gianfranco Zola has been talking up Carlton Cole again ahead of this week's internationals,

"I think Carlton will be a very good player for England," said Zola. "I have just been in the job six months so I can't really say to Fabio 'do this or that'.

"I am sure he will be a good player for him but whether he plays or not I don't know.

"He had a couple of opportunities but he had one man on top of him straightaway. Carlton is a player who is improving and am sure he will get better and better."

Sunday, February 08, 2009

West Ham 0 Man Utd 1

The first half was a fairly even affair with West Ham maybe just shading it on the number of chances created.

In the 11th minute Neill's shot from the edge of the area was saved low down by Van der Sar. A minute later and Cole was played clear and attempted to chip Van der Sar but it was easy for the keeper to save. In the 23rd minute Collison managed to weave his way into the box but in the end couldn't get a shot away. At the end of the half Noble found Cole just inside the area and Cole spun and shot but his shot was blocked.

Man Utd's best effort was when Ronaldo deflected a Scholes' shot goalwards and Green was forced to tip the ball over the bar. Man Utd's only other clear effort was a Ronaldo header that flew wide from a corner.

In the second half things were again very even with the only difference between the two teams being 10 seconds of individual brilliance from Giggs. West Ham started the second half well with efforts from Behrami, Noble and Neill in the first three minutes.

In defence West Ham looked pretty secure as well, until in the 62nd minute Giggs avoided a lunging tackle from Cole and then drifted into the box from the left wing where he shot low into the far corner to give Man Utd the lead.

After that West Ham looked reasonable going forward but never really looked like they would draw level. Their best chance came in the 69th minute when Cole tried a little inside flick from four yards but his effort was deflected wide.

In the end a draw would have been a fair result but for Giggs' little bit of magic.

West Ham in the Sunday Papers

Congratulations to Rob Green, Matthew Upson and Carlton Cole, who have all been selected for the England squad to face Spain next week.

The News of the World say West Ham forward David di Michele wants to make his loan move from Torino a permanent deal - he would cost the Hammers about £750,000.

The Daily Mail claims Zola has said he won't walk out on West Ham even though Chelsea fans are desperate for him to become their new manager.

West Ham vs Man Utd - Live Streaming

LiveFooty have a SopCast stream, a TVU Player stream, a UUSee stream and a TVAnts stream of the game.

FSi have lots of links for most of the streaming formats.

There is live radio commentary of the game on BBC Radio 5 Live, BBC London 94.9 & BBC London DAB.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

A Slow West Ham News Day

The Guardian has an interview with West Ham manager Gianfranco Zola. The most interesting bit of the interview is when Zola explains that he takes charge of coaching the defence, whilst Steve Clarke trains the attackers.

However with not much other West Ham news around some of the newspapers decided to just make some stuff up.

The Sun has the most ridiculous story I've heard in years. They say West Ham now eat pizzas after games and are worried about a food fight with Man Utd after the game. Yawn!

The Daily Mail almost compete with The Sun in the let's just make something up stakes. They say that Alex Ferguson has no idea why West Ham fans hate Man Utd so much. However if you read the article it is clear they haven't spoken to Ferguson about this and he hasn't said any such thing.

The Mail did speak to Alan Pardew, who does say that there is always an 'extra intensity' to Man Utd games at The Boleyn. Why The Mail think they have to pretend that Ferguson was part of the discussion when he so clearly wasn't is beyond me.

Cole for England

West Ham manager Gianfranco Zola believes Carlton Cole is good enough to front the England attack.

"I hope he is considered because he is a very good player and he is not yet at the top of his game. He can still improve. He is working hard every day and getting more confident and if he plays for England it will be good for him and for England.

"I'm not the one who can tell Capello what to do because he knows more about football than I do, but I am sure he will be considering him.

Friday, February 06, 2009

West Ham vs Man Utd - The Predictions

West Ham and Man Utd are the two in form teams in the Premier League. West Ham go into this game looking for a fourth successive home win and Man Utd go into it searching for a fourth away win on the spin.

Can the league's in form striker, Carlton Cole beat the league's in form goalkeeper? West Ham's two new signings Savio and Kovac are both unlikely to start but Savio should feature at some point in the game. For Man Utd Rooney is almost over a hamstring injury that has kept him out of five games. However, if Rooney plays he will then be named in England's squad to face Spain next Wednesday so Ferguson might leave him out.

Lawro thinks "West Ham are arguably the form team in the division" so he thinks they are going to lose. Despite predicting a 2-0 loss for West Ham last week and getting it all wrong he does the same again this week.

Lawro predicts a 0-2 loss for West Ham

Sky say West Ham are "playing some attractive football at present and striker Carlton Cole in particular is flourishing under the Italian's guidance". However they think Man United are unbeatable at the moment.

Sky predict a 0-1 loss for West Ham

Setanta point out that West Ham have beaten Man Utd on their last two visits to the Boleyn. However they think a Man Utd team with Ronaldo returning to top form will be too much for the Hammers.

Setanta predict a 0-1 loss for West Ham

Thursday, February 05, 2009

ITV Ruin Adverts By Cuting to Football

I hear that ITV upset viewers last night by actually cutting away from the adverts and accidentally showing 145 minutes of the bore fest between Everton and Liverpool.

West Ham Sign Ilunga or Will or Something ...

The Sun claim that "Herita Ilunga has snubbed Liverpool to sign a four-year contract at Upton Park." However in the same article they say that "The Hammers will pay Toulouse £2million when the Congo left-back’s loan runs out in May.

So that's as clear as mud.

It looks to me that West Ham may have told Toulouse that they definitely want to take up their option to sign Ilunga at the end of his loan period but as yet have not actually signed the left back.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Dalla Bonna to Train with West Ham?

Italian midfielder Sam Dalla Bona has asked West Ham if he can train with the club after turning down a move to a Serie B Italian side.

"In the last hours of the transfer window, Triestina did approach me, but I have another idea in mind," Dalla Bona told Gazzetta dello Sport.

"I spoke with Zola and I asked him about the possibility of training with West Ham because free agents have until March to find a new club.

"Zola told me he will ask the officials. I wait for an answer."

Dalla Bonna 27, is a free agent after he was released by Napoli.

According to The Daily Mail West Ham have now said 'no' to signing Dalla Bona.

Parker Wins FA Cup Award

Scott Parker has been named the E.ON Player of the Round for his man-of-the-match display against Hartlepool United.

Parker beat Swansea City goalkeeper Dimi Konstantopoulos, Doncaster Rovers shot-stopper Neil Sullivan, Kettering Town forward Craig Westcarr and Chelsea midfielder Michael Ballack to win the award.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

West Ham Sign New Keeper

West Ham have signed Hungarian goalkeeper Peter Kurucz on loan until the end of the season. The 20-year-old Ujpest FC keeper played in two trial matches at West Ham last month.

West Ham in the Birds Nest

West Ham, Chelsea and Hull have been invited to play in the Premier League Asia Trophy. The last one was held in Hong Kong but according to Bloomberg the tournament may be held at the Chinese capital’s Bird’s Nest Stadium, which hosted the 2008 Olympic Games. However no decision has yet been made as to the host country or venue.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Ilunga Signs for West Ham

Kumb are reporting that Herita Ilunga has signed a three-and-a-half year contract with West Ham.

Kumb say West Ham opted to exercise their 'right to buy' option at a cost of around £1.5million earlier in the transfer window. It seems very strange to me that the club have kept this quite.

At £1.5 million that's a brilliant signing!

Have We Signed Ilunga?

The official site has a round-up by Scott Duxbury on the transfer window. In the statement Duxbury says,

"Having also exercised the option to keep Herita Ilunga at the club long-term, we are very happy with the business we have done."

Did we sign Ilunga permanently without my realising? Surely the club would have made more of this if we had signed Ilunga on a permanent deal.

Davenport Loaned to Sunderland

Calum Davenport has been loaned to Sunderland for an undisclosed fee. Sunderland have the option to buy Davenport in the summer if he impresses.

Scott Duxbury confirmed that West Ham were looking at bringing in at least one other player but in the end decided not to rush into any deals.

"The club is very happy with the business done in January. We had been looking at a couple of the manager's targets but a deal could not be concluded," he said.

"Rather than rush anything through, and with the manager happy with his squad, we felt it best to wait until the summer when we can take stock of the squad and spend our money wisely."

Davenport to Sunderland

The firmest rumour to emerge so far today is that Calum Davenport is at Sunderland having a medical. Although there are also rumours suggesting this is just a loan move with an option to buy later.

About 50 minutes ago (2.39pm) the BBC reported that West Ham had told them that they weren't expecting any more arrivals at West Ham today but did confirm Davenport's medical with Sunderland.

Of course that's not enough to stop Sky Sports News who at 4.08pm report that West Ham are in talks with Dinamo Bucharest for defender Sergiu Homei.

West Ham's New Moon

Various websites are reporting that West Ham will today sign South African Bryce Moon from Panathinaikos. The reports say West Ham wish to sign the 22-year-old to provide cover at right-back and midfield following the departure of Julien Faubert.

Moon would cost between a £1 million and £1.5 million and has apparently been tracked by West Ham's technical director Gianluca Nani for some time.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

First the US President Now Gordon Brown

Everyone now knows that the President of the United States is a West Ham fan, it now seems that the British Prime Minister may be a closet Iron as well. For some surreal reason The Observer asked Rio Ferdinand to interview Gordon Brown.

Here's a little snippet from their conversation,

RF: Yeah, I’m enjoying it now. When I started at West Ham …

GB: There were some great players there.

RF: Di Canio… Lampard was there. I never wanted to leave and at the start it was really good … but since I’ve been at Man United it’s been a dream, really.

Nice to hear that the British Prime Minister rhapsodies over the lost generation of West Ham greats like the best of us. 

Faubert also Thought Real Move a Joke

Julien Faubert has revealed that he also thought that the loan offer from Real Madrid was a joke,

"I got a phone call from a Real Madrid recruiter. I wasn't very polite to him. I thought I was being made fun of, that it was a joke. I had just found out that contacts with Lyon and Newcastle had fallen through. I wasn't feeling good.''

West Ham Sunday Gossip

Not much West Ham news around today:

According to the Independent West Ham have made inquiries about bringing 37-year-old former Sweden international Henrik Larsson, currently a free agent, to Upton Park. The club face competition from Bolton.

The News of the World say West Ham will sell Dean Ashton and Kieron Dyer at the end of the season.

West Ham Look For One More Signing

West Ham have confirmed that Julien Faubert has joined Real Madrid on loan until the end of the season with the Spanish club having an option to make the deal more permanent if they want.

Steve Clarke has also revealed that West Ham are looking to bring in one more player before the end of the transfer window,

"The transfer window is close to closing and the quicker it gets to Monday evening the better. We may look to bring one more in before it closes. It would give us more depth in the squad but if it doesn't happen then we are happy with what we have got."

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