Thursday, December 31, 2009

West Ham to Rest Players in Cup

The Telegraph say that West Ham manager Gianfranco Zola is set to rest several senior players, including Rob Green, in the FA Cup tie against Arsenal.

When you consider the first team players lost to Zola through injury this week's fifth round tie may resemble a West Ham reserves vs Arsenal Reserves fixture.

Sky are reporting that Jordan Spence has been recalled early by West Ham from his loan spell at Scunthorpe. Spence has not featured for Scunthorpe since October but Sky say that he could feature against Arsenal.

Villa in for Parker

The Guardian say that Aston Villa are the latest club to consider a January move for West Ham's Scott Parker. I wonder if they will offer Reo-Coker any offer?

The Daily Mail claim that West Ham are confident that Parker will be fit for the Wolves game. However they say the full extent of his injury won't be known until the result of his scans are known. So then, presumably West Ham don't know if Parker will be fit to face Wolves.

Freddie Sears has been recalled to West Ham. Presumably this means that West Ham won't be buying any strikers in January then.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Inter Market Not to Make £100 million Offer

Details are beginning to emerge about Inter Market's bid for West Ham. It is now understood that the so called £100 million offer by Inter Market for West Ham includes an estimation of West Ham's debt at £48million (£10 million higher than the club's own estimation).

The Telegraph report that this means that the Inter Market offer is worth only around £30 million to Straumur. This is about a third of what Straumur are asking for, so it seems likely that another bid will bite the dust.

The Telegraph are also reporting that Matthew Upson is keen to leave West Ham.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

West Ham After Mutu

The Telegraph report that West Ham are interested in signing Adrian Mutu in January. However Mutu is currently on a long term contract at Fiorentina, so I very much doubt West Ham have anywhere near the transfer funds available to make a bid.

The Telegraph also report that Stoke are ready to make a £9 million offer for Scott Parker.

Inter Market to Make £100 Million Offer

'Sky Sports understands' that Inter Market intend to make a £100 million bid for West Ham next Monday. They also claim, that if successful, the group intend to make transfer funds available to Zola to spend in January.

Sky say that "it is believed CB Holdings, the company in control of West Ham, are looking favourably at the deal but are in no rush to sell."

Monday, December 28, 2009

Sp#rs 2 West Ham 0

West Ham decided to start the game with Parker who it was reported had a hamstring injury but it was a gamble that didn't work.

West Ham started the game reasonably well but as usual looked vulnerable down the flanks and didn't look particularly threatening going forward. West Ham's best chance of the half fell to Parker in the 9th minute when Franco played the midfielder clear but Parker's shot from wide right in the penalty area flew well wide left of the goal.

In the 11th minute Lennon got in behind Ilunga, drove to the byline and crossed to Modric who scored from 10 yards out. The injured Parker was then replaced by Jimenez. In the 33rd minute Sp#rs again made good work down the right wing and Crouch should have scored from 6 yards out but missed wide left of the goal.

West Ham's only other chance of the half fell to Collison, who forced a save from Gomes with a 20 yard shot. However as the half progressed the absence of Parker began to tell and as half-time approached it was all one way traffic towards the West Ham goal.

The second half started the same way as the first had ended and Defoe and Huddlestone both shot over in the opening couple of minutes. That seemed to determine the pattern for the rest of the game, with Sp#rs dominating possession and being wasteful with the numerous opportunities created.

In the 75th minute West Ham actually had a shot on goal when Kovac shot over from 20 yards. However that was a rare effort in what was practically all one way traffic. In reality it was a miracle that Sp#rs failed to get their second until the 81st minute. Green saved Defoe's initial shot from the edge of the box but the ball rebounded back to Defoe who then fired in Sp#rs' second.

West Ham can only pray for the return of Parker and Cole, as without them you suspect there could be more embarrassing performances ahead.

Tottenham vs West Ham - Live Streaming

Myp2p and Fsi both have a number of links for today's game for SopCast and all the other major streaming formats.

BBC Radio Five live and Sky are also both featuring the game live.

Potential Owners Spotted at West Ham

The Sun say that David Gold and David Sullivan as well as Malaysian entrepreneur Tony Fernandes were at the West Ham game on Saturday. However The Telegraph say that Fernandes's attendance is not thought to be connected with any fresh bid to buy West Ham.

The media claim that West Ham have until January 7th to respond to Sullivan & Gold's offer.

Jack Wilshere says he is keen on playing on loan for West Ham,

"I would prefer to go to a Premier League club," the Arsenal player told the Sunday Times. "You'd rather stay in the league where you are going to play. I'd love West Ham but I'll go where the boss thinks best."

Lawro thinks that West Ham will struggle today against Sp~rs. He predicts a 2-0 loss for West Ham.

Sky are also predicting a two goal loss but go for a 3-1 scoreline.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

CB Holding in No Rush to Sell

West Ham issued the following statement today. The statement seems to be hinting that none of the present offers on the table to buy the club are close to being accepted.

"Our shareholder CB Holding has made it clear it would like to find new owners for the club in the next three years and that is still the case.

"In recent months we have had a number of approaches from parties interested in investing in West Ham United. The club have held a number of discussions with those parties and the talks are ongoing.

"CB Holding is not under pressure to conclude an agreement in the immediate future, but the club will keep supporters informed of any developments when appropriate."

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Kezman Offered to West Ham

The Daily Mirror claim that West Ham have been offered Mateja Kezman by Paris Saint Germain. PSG are apparently keen to offload the striker permanently but will settle for a loan deal.

Fernandes Not Buying West Ham

Tony Fernandes has told The Evening Standard that he won't be making a bid to buy West Ham and that he is concentrating on setting up his Formula 1 team instead. When asked if he was going ahead with a bid for West Ham he said,

'No, not any time soon. I've got my hands full setting up a Formula One team so it's not something I'm going to do.

I do worry about the future of West Ham. They're in a precarious situation and have been badly managed with a poor balance sheet. The fans, of which I'm one, deserve better but it's not particularly tempting for a buyer."

Monday, December 21, 2009

Sears Returning to West Ham

Crystal Palace boss Neil Warnock says that West Ham have asked Freddie Sears to cut short his one year loan and return to West Ham.

"West Ham have asked for him to go back in January," said Warnock. "They have one or two problems up front and he is their player at the end of the day.

"He'll be with us for the next two games but it's likely he'll go back after that."

Mark Noble has spoken out for under fire West Ham manager Gianfranco Zola,

"Did we give him an extra 10 per cent? Yes, because he's such a good man and you put your body on the line for him in every game. It's nice to feel that way about your manager."

Matthew Upson seems to have hinted to The Evening Standard that he may no longer be a West Ham player by the end of January. Asked if he would be sold in January Upson told the Standard,

"It's a difficult question because there are so many things out of my control and things that may happen."

Sunday, December 20, 2009

West Ham 1 Chelsea 1

West Ham welcomed back Upson and Noble to the starting line up. Chelsea started the brighter of the two teams and dominated possession in the first 30 minutes. Lampard forced a save from Green in the 7th minute with a 20 yard effort and Ivanovic headed just over from 10 yrds. In the 18th minute Gabbidon was forced off and was replaced by Tomkins.

In the 32nd minute West Ham managed their first shot on goal when Collison shot from the edge of the area and forced a good save from Cech. West Ham managed to get a bit more possession of the ball after the half hour mark but Chelsea still had more efforts on goal. Lampard shot wide from 12 yards in the 38th minute. Three minutes later and Joe Cole also shot wide from 22 yrds. In the 43rd minute a quich freekick caught West Ham napping and Drogba fired into the side netting from wide left.

In the 44th minute Franco played the ball to Collison and Collison drove into the area where he was taken down by A Cole for a penalty. From the spot Diamanti scored, putting the ball in the bottom right corner of the goal with Cech diving the wrong way. Just before the half time whistle Kalou shot wide from four yards.

In the second half West Ham soaked up some early pressure well, only to be undone by the officials. In the 57th minute Upson won the ball off Sturridge in the West Ham area only for the assistant ref to flag for a penalty. Lampard then scored twice from the spot only for the ref to make him retake it twice. Lampard then scored on his third attempt to make it 1-1.

After the equaliser Chelsea probably had more possession but West Ham probably had the better chances. In the 72nd minute Diamanti forced a good save from Cech from a shot from just outside the area.

In the last five minutes of the half West Ham tried hard to get the winner and had the best opportunity of the half when Franco powered a header from 6 yards, which forced another save from Cech.

West Ham looked much better defensively today and in the end it was only poor refereeing that denied them a much needed win.

All's Well at West Ham

The Telegraph have an interesting article on West Ham today. The article says that Scott Duxbury, Zola and Clarke had a positive meeting this week, suggesting that the managerial positions at West Ham are safe.

The Telegraph go on to to say that Zola and Clarke are hopeful that funds will be made available to strengthen the squad in the January transfer window. Apparently chairman Andrew Bernhardt is furious at the way the club is being portrayed as in a financial crisis. He has promised that all funds raised in the transfer market will be reinvested directly and that no players have to be sold in January.

There does seem to be a suggestion in the article that Upson could be sold, due to his apparent unwillingness to sign a new contract. There is also a discussion about Nani's success (or lack of it) in bringing players to the club.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Upson and Parker on the Wanted List

The Guardian (and most of the other papers) say that Sp#rs will make an £8m bid for West Ham's Matthew Upson and, possibly, Scott Parker as well. The Telegraph say that Arsenal, Manchester City and Liverpool are also interested in Upson.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Straumur Debt Repayments Frozen

West Ham's ultimate owners, Straumur, have gained another reprieve on paying back their debts. Their debt repayments have been frozen until September.

The BBC and The Guardian are both reporting that this will allow CB Holdings to turn down Gold and Sullivan's offer to buy the club and wait for better offers.

No Adriano But Maybe Hutton

Sky Sports are reporting that West Ham target Adriano is likely to be staying at Flamengo after all. There had be rumours that the striker wanted to move clubs but his team mate Ronaldo Angelim says he is staying at the club.

Sky are also reporting that West Ham want to make a bid for Spurs right back Alan Hutton.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Bolton 3 West Ham 1

West Ham started a fairly miserable half with Dyer and Collison. However Dyer's first start for a while didn't last long as he was forced off in the 20th minute with what looked a hamstring injury. Before being injured Dyer had West Ham's only shot of the first forty minutes and the only one on target for the Irons in the half. His shot from wide left of the goal 15 yards out, however, was straight at the keeper.

For the first 30 minutes West Ham played some reasonable football, without getting anywhere near the Bolton goal, but from about 30 minutes on it was all Bolton. Muamaba came close when his 20 yards effort was deflected wide. Knight and Davis both had headed efforts on goal, both of which flew over the bar. Klasnic shot over from 20 yards, as did Cohen from 10 yards.

In the 45th minute Gabbidon shot from the edge of the area but his shot was wide of the left hand post. In the end West Ham were lucky to go into the break on even terms.

West Ham started the second half a little brighter. Ilunga actually managed a header on target from ten yards from a corner, which was easily saved and Parker broke well and shot from the edge of the area in the 56th minute, forcing a good save from Jaaskelainen. However in the 63rd minute Lee drifted in from the left wing, played a one-two with Klasnic and beat Green from 7 yards.

It only took West Ham six minutes to get back on terms. Franco did well on the left of the area, passed to Collison, who then laid off a pass to Diamanti who shot and scored from the edge of the area. Two minutes later and Parker almost put West Ham into the lead, shooting just over from 20 yards.

With West Ham then looking the more likely to score in the 76th minute Green fumbled an easy catch and dropped the ball straight at Klasnic's feet for him to score an easy goal from four yards.

In the 87th minute Bolton scored their third from a corner to the back post when Cahill headed home from three yards.

So another depressing evening for West Ham, with Dyer presumably out injured for a couple of seasons and Green making a howler of a mistake to gift Bolton the lead.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Gold & Sullivan Bid Rejected

The Times say that CB Holdings will tomorrow reject Gold and Sullivan's bid to buy West Ham. The Times say Gold and Sullivan made two separate bids, one for outright ownership and one for a 50% stake in the club. Both bids will be rejected.

The Times say that "there remains potential interest from Intermarket Group, a London-based investment group, and Tony Fernandes, the Malaysian founder of Air Asia, but that has yet to materialise into a serious offer."

Gold & Sullivan Make £50 Bid

Sky are reporting that Sullivan and Gold have made a £50 million bid for West Ham. The deal is apparently in two parts, with some of the money going to the Icelandic owners and the rest to service the current debt and provide transfer funds in January.

Sky doesn't say if the bid is for only a stake in the club, as previously reported. If this bid is for 100% ownership of the club I really can't see it being accepted. The bid would represent an offer of say £30-£40 million to CB Holdings and around 30% of what they value the club at.

Sky say the bid is just one of several which appear to be on the table for the club and that a decision is expected to be made in Iceland on Friday on which to accept.

Cole Going Nowhere

Carlton Cole has told the Evening Standard that he has no intentions of leaving West Ham,

"It's just paper talk and I haven't heard anything about a move. I love West Ham. I just want to get back to playing and I can't do anything while I'm injured."

The Mail say that Cole hopes to make a January return from his knee injury. Whilst The Sun report that West Ham are hoping to sign Brazilian striker Adriano on the cheap in January.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Upson and Parker to Leave in January

The Mirror have an 'exclusive' story claiming that City are to make a £10 million bid for West Ham's Matthew Upson. They also have the 'exclusive' shocking news that they would force injury prone Matthew Upson to undergo a medical before signing him. They also 'exclusively' claim that, although he plays in a completetly different position from Wayne Bridge, City's signing of Upson would end Bridge's World Cup dreams.

The News of the World claim that Scott Parker (who they say signed for West Ham in June) is ready to leave the club in January. Manchester City, Aston Villa and possibly Arsenal are the three teams the NoW have plucked out of the air 'who will lead the chase' for Parker.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Birmingham 1 West Ham 0

West Ham started the game really poorly and Birmingham had all the early momentum. In the opening ten minutes Birmingham won a succession of corners and twice forced Green into making saves. One was from a flicked effort by Johnson from a corner and the other from a Larsson header.

It took West Ham about 30 minutes before they started finding some rhythm. In the 31st minute Diamanti had West Ham's best effort of the half, beating three players on the left wing and then shooting from the edge of the penalty area into the side netting, just wide of the left hand post. A minute later and another Diamanti effort flew just wide of the other post.

Apart from that West Ham's only other real efforts were two long shots from Stanislas both of which were on target but failed to really trouble the keeper. Just before the end of the half Birmingham probably had the best chance to open the scoring when Jerome headed over from 6 yards.

West Ham were OK for five minutes in the second half. In the 50th minute Diamanti tried a chipped shot from ten yards out from the right of the penalty area and just missed the left hand post. However a minute after that Stanislas gave the ball away just inside his own half and two quick passes found Bowyer unmarked ten yards out. His shot beat Green and Birmingham took the lead.

In the 64th minute Ridgewell had a golden opportunity to make it 2-0 but he somehow managed to shoot over from about two feet out. In the 68th minute Collison and Dyer were brought on for Kovac and Stanislas. Dyer almost had an immediate impact winning the ball on the halfway line and driving straight at goal. His shot from the edge of the penalty area looked destined for the back of the net but hit the right hand post and bounced back into play.

In the 77th minute Noble was sent off after winning the ball in a tackle, which the ref strangely decided to reward with Noble's second yellow. West Ham down to ten men however seemed to put up more of a fight. In the 81st minute Diamanti fired a freekick from just outside the penalty area inches over the bar.

In the 81st minute Nouble came on for ILunga. In the 85th minute a great ball from Parker played Franco into the area but his 8 yard shot was saved by Harte with his feet and Dimanti's shot following up was headed clear. In the 87th minute it was Jerome who found himself in behind the West Ham defence, at the other end of the field, but his shot, from just outside the West Ham area, narrowly missed wide of the right hand post.

In the closing minutes of the game West Ham pressurised the Birmingham goal and won a succession of corners. Parker, Diamanti and Franco all managed efforts on goal but it was too little too late and Birmingham held out for the home win.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Dean Ashton Retires

Dean Ashton has finally announced his long rumoured retirement from football.

West Ham United CEO Scott Duxbury said,

"This is a sad day and our thoughts are with Dean. I would like to place on record our thanks to him for all his efforts and wish him the very best. I would also like to thank the fans for their patience and understanding during what has been a difficult time."

Ashton never really fully recovered from the broken ankle he picked up in training whilst on duty with England in August 2006. It is obviously a sad day for Dean Ashton and a big loss to West Ham.

I'm pretty certain that without the injury problems Ashton would have gone on to become a West Ham legend and a regular for England.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

January Striking Options

The Daily Mirror claim that West Ham are eyeing up a 'cut-price' offer for Stoke's James Beattie. The paper say that Beattie looks set to quit the Britannia Stadium in January after a dressing room row with boss Tony Pulis

The Daily Mail claim that Adriano has four options open to him. His current club Flamengo have offered him a new contract. However he also has offers from West Ham, AC Milan and Roma.

Sky are reporting that Club America have denied that West Ham United have made a bid for striker Salvador Cabanas.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Gold & Sullivan Make West Ham Bid

The BBC (and many others) are reporting that David Sullivan and David Gold have tabled an offer to buy into West Ham. The pair want to take a share in the club for a small fee, with the option to buy outright at a later date.

On Friday, Straumur will hear the results of their latest bankruptcy hearing in Reykjavik. Straumur are expected to get a nine month moratorium on paying back their debts.

There are rumours that the deal being offered by Gold and Sullivan is that they will make funds available over the next couple of seasons while CB Holdings continue to take most of the revenue from TV money, gate receipts and sponsorship. After two years Gold and Sullivan would then have the option to buy the club outright.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

West Ham Plan Move for Adriano

The Sun today report that West Ham are planning a 'shock' move for Brizilian striker Adriano. Adriano is available on a free transfer from Flamengo.

The Mail say that West Ham are unlikely succeed in tempting Luca Toni to the club. Toni seems destined to leave Bayern Munich in January but seems keen on a return to Italy. Speaking to an Italian magazine Toni has said,

"I miss everything from my country - the fans, my friends, my mother. In Germany I have made mistakes that I regret. And they are likely to cost me a place at the World Cup in South Africa."

Monday, December 07, 2009

The Relegation Fight Starts Now

Gianfranco Zola says that West Ham are not looking to sell players in January but are looking to add to the existing squad,

“As far as I know we're not going to be under pressure to sell, we will see what we are able to buy but we'll be looking for something.”

Zola, however, did admit that West Ham are in a relegation battle,

"The next two games can really make a difference for us, starting on Saturday.

"We have to forget quickly about Manchester United because they are on a different level and right now we can't compete with them. Saturday is a big match and we need a very big performance.

"We are in a relegation fight. We have to accept that. We need to make a real effort to get out of this position straightaway.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

January Sales

The Sunday papers seem to have taken a break from selling Matthew Upson this week. This week they are flogging off Cole to all bidders.

The People reckon that Sp#rs want Cole for £9 million. The Mirror say Cole is Arsenal's number one target and West Ham will find a £15 million offer hard to resist.

The Star say West Ham are 'closing in' on signing Luca Toni in January.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

West Ham 0 Man Utd 4

Tomkins was brought back into defence for Da Costa, Hines replaced the injured Cole.

Man Utd dominated most of the possession in the first half and for 40 minutes West Ham soaked up the pressure fairly well. Man Utd won a succession of corners but in the first 40 minutes didn't really get a shot on goal. In the 12th minute Valencia's glancing header from a corner flew over the bar. In the 30th minute Carrick's through ball for Rooney forced Green to rush out and save at Rooney's feet.

At the other end West Ham's best chance came when Hines created space for himself in the area and fired a shot across the six yard area and Collison, running in at the far post, just lost out in the race to the ball.

Having coped well for most of the half, as the half-time whistle approached West Ham seemed to switch off and become sloppy on the ball and Man United began to look a bit more dangerous. In injury time at the end of the half, Scholes was first to an Ilunga cleared header and shot and scored from the edge of the West Ham penalty area.

Dimanati came on for Hines in the second half. West Ham had a brief glimmer of hope when, in the 56th minute Diamanti crossed from deep on the left and Tomkins had a free header at the far post from four yards, but his header was straight at the keeper.

Four minutes later and West Ham were two down from a 25 yards screamer from Gibson, after some good play down the left by Giggs. In the 70th minute it was 3-0 after a low cross across the West Ham goal was knocked in at the far post by Valencia. A minute after the restart Valencia turned provider when his low cross into the area was met by an unmarked Rooney, who scored from 6 yards.

In the 76th minute Stanilas came close to getting a consolation goal for West Ham, when his eight yard shot from right of the goal just missed wide of the far post. In the 62nd minute Diamanti also came close with a great freekick from 30 yards which would have just crept in the top left corner but for a save from the keeper. In the 87th minute Diamanti fired wide from ten yards out and to the left of goal.

I have a feeling it is going to be a difficult December for West Ham. We have now let in five goals in two games from players getting in behind our full-backs and firing low crosses into the six yard area.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Cole Out for Six Games

The BBC are reporting that Carlton Cole will miss at least the next six games for West Ham. However they say that Matthew Upson should be back at the end of this month.

West Ham have some tough games in December, so the absence of Cole and Upson could prove very costly. West Ham's major hope for this season has to be that all of the home games from Christmas until the end of the season are winnable.

West Ham vs Man Utd - The Previews

Despite having lost just one game in the last six matches this will be a tough ask for West Ham against a Man Utd team needing to win to keep in touch with Chelsea at the top of the league.

A West Ham team without Upson, Behrami and Cole will face a Man Utd team that rested its star players in mid-week. Man Utd may also have Edwin van der Sar back in goal after three games out. West Ham may have Dyer back, possibly from the bench.

Lawro says West Ham aren't strong enough defensively to keep out a side as full of 'sheer quality' as Man Utd.

Lawro predicts a 1-3 West Ham loss

Sky also predict a 1-3 West Ham loss

Thursday, December 03, 2009

West Ham to Move for Luca Toni

The Guardian say that West Ham are in advanced talks with Bayern Munich striker Luca Toni about bringing the Italian World Cup winner to Upton Park in next month's transfer window.

However the paper claim any move "may be dependent on how soon Carlton Cole returns from injury." This seems unlikely if, as reported on the West Ham website, Cole is only out for a matter of weeks.

Luca Toni has had repeated run-ins with Bayern's manager Louis van Gaal and has only 18 months left on his contract. It seems likely that Toni will move to another club in January and that he will be available on the cheap.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Cole Out for a Number of Weeks

Hidden in the middle of a piece on Zavon Hines being ready to fill Carlton Cole's football boots the West Ham official site have revealed that Cole will be out for a few weeks,

"Cole (is) set to be out for a number of weeks. Cole will not need surgery though and, having being closely assessed in recent days, will start his rehab soon."

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Cole Out Until Late January?

The Daily Telegraph say that Carlton Cole's injury is not as bad as first thought but, "even in the best-case scenario he will not play until the new year, which rules him out of at least six league matches and the third round of the FA Cup, at home to Arsenal."

However, reading between the lines, The Telegraph don't actually know the results of Cole's scan and appear to be just guessing.

West Ham Delay Accounts Again

The Guardian say that West Ham have delayed submitting the club's accounts to Companies House. The accounts will now be published in February.

The paper says that this could help West Ham ward off any circling vultures in the January transfer window. However, to me, it sends a clear signal that everything is far from rosy with the club's finances, but then I guess that's not new news to many.

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