WHO Poll
Q: 2019/20 With seven games to go will West Ham stay up
a. Our demise was sealed when the idiots on the Board appointed Moyes, we're down
b. Despite the efforts of Moyes and the players, we will stay up by the smallest of margins
c. I'm beyond caring & couldn't give two hoots either way

Sunday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Alan 1:51 Sun Dec 1
Other articles by Alan ...


Watford have called a meeting for Sunday in which manager Quique Sanchez Flores will be sacked for a second time. (The Athletic - subscription required)

Former Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino, linked with Manchester United and Arsenal, would have to repay his £12.5m pay-off if he takes another Premier League job this season. (Sunday Express)

Pochettino has been advised not to jump straight back into management at Arsenal by friends who believe he should wait for a better job. (Sunday Telegraph)

Arsenal may wait until the summer to land their top managerial target Brendan Rodgers, but the Leicester boss regards the Gunners post as his dream job. (Star on Sunday)

Manchester City assistant boss Mikel Arteta is the man Arsenal want to replace Unai Emery. (Sunday Mirror)

West Ham are monitoring Arsenal interim boss Freddie Ljungberg as a potential replacement for Manuel Pellegrini. (Star on Sunday)

Jose Mourinho was offered £12m by Real Madrid to not take another managerial job and wait for Zinedine Zidane to be sacked before he joined Tottenham. (Sun on Sunday)

Everton want Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe, a boyhood Toffees fan, to succeed under-fire manager Marco Silva. (Sunday Mirror)

Everton would put former Toffees striker Duncan Ferguson temporarily in charge if Silva is sacked before Wednesday's Merseyside derby. (Mail on Sunday)

Real Madrid are planning a £70m bid for Arsenal's Gabon striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, 30, with Colombia midfielder James Rodriguez, 28, included as part of the deal. (Eldesmarque, via Star)

Chelsea are keeping tabs on Zaha and Borussia Dortmund's England winger Jadon Sancho, 19, as they initiate plans to bolster their wing options. (Sunday Express)

Spain's 31-year-old striker Diego Costa, who joined Atletico Madrid from Chelsea in 2018, will join Flamengo in a £25m deal. (Mundo Deportivo - in Spanish)

Liverpool and Tottenham are ready to battle to sign Lyon and Holland midfielder Memphis Depay, 25. (Sunday Express)

Paris St-Germain have yet to offer a new contract to France forward Kylian Mbappe, 20. (Le10Sport - in French)

Manchester City are targeting Leicester and Turkey defender Caglar Soyuncu, 23. (Sunday Times - subscription required)

England goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, 25, insists the Everton players are right behind manager Marco Silva and do not want to see him sacked. (Observer)

Former Manchester United and West Ham striker Javier Hernandez would be open to a move to the MLS. The 31-year-old Mexico international joined Sevilla in September. (LA Times)

Sheffield United will move for former England goalkeeper Ben Foster, 36, if Watford are relegated at the end of the season. (Sun on Sunday)

Aston Villa are ready to sell Ivorian striker Jonathan Kodjia, 30, in January. (Football Insider)

Inter are preparing to make a move for Atalanta's Swedish midfielder Dejan Kulusevski, who is on loan at Parma this season. The 19-year-old has been linked with Manchester United and Arsenal. (Inside Futbol)

Crystal Palace boss Roy Hodgson is expecting another transfer window of interest in Ivorian forward Wilfried Zaha, 27, in January. (London Evening Standard)

Celtic plan talks with Israel midfielder Nir Bitton to ensure he does not run down his contract. The 28-year-old has been linked with Burnley. (Glasgow Evening Times)

Chelsea's USA midfielder Christian Pulisic, 21, has admitted he "wore a Chelsea jersey around the house all the time" during pre-season while itching to begin the next chapter of his career in west London. (Goal)


Cresswell eases pressure on Pellegrini as West Ham sink weary Chelsea

Barney Ronay at Stamford Bridge

At the end of this victory West Ham’s players ran across the turf to hug their goalkeeper David Martin. Moments later Martin, a debutant here, could be seen climbing into the stand to embrace his father, Alvin, 20 years a West Ham player, and present on radio commentary duties.

A tearful David Martin is congratulated after helping seal West Ham’s win at Stamford Bridge. Photograph: Charlotte Wilson/Offside/Offside via Getty Images

It was a wonderful moment for both Martins and indeed for a West Ham team who broke a run of eight league games without a win with a fine, well-organised performance against a meek-looking Chelsea, with Declan Rice and Mark Noble fiercely disciplined in the centre.

Best of all was the air of unaccustomed defensive calm in the absence of the flailing Roberto. From a goalkeeper who made the simple act of catching the ball look like a code red nuclear emergency, to a 33-year-old at his 10th league club, West Ham had finally found a man to keep the ball out of their net.

Aaron Cresswell’s excellent goal just after half-time made the difference, the only goal of a first victory on this ground since 2002, when Frank Lampard and Jody Morris were in the Chelsea team.

Aaron Cresswell of West Ham United curls a shot into the bottom right corner to put his team 1-0 up against Chelsea

Martin had few saves to make. Chelsea looked like a team running on fumes after a tough series of games. They were also lacking a cutting edge in the absence of Tammy Abraham. Not many teams can call on a World Cup-winning centre-forward as back-up. But then Olivier Giroud is not your usual World Cup-winning centre-forward.

This was Giroud’s first start since August. He looked well short of match sharpness in his 72 minutes on the pitch, during which the ball bounced off various parts of his body at a series of interesting angles and where he seemed for long periods to be playing in a pair of diving boots.

Lampard took the chance to rest N’Golo Kanté, César Azpilicueta and Willian from the start. Pedro returned to the side for the first time since August but barely registered as a physical presence before trotting off just past the hour.

For West Ham, Sébastien Haller was dropped, Michail Antonio playing a lone, raging bull role up front. Most importantly, Roberto was finally euthanised in favour of Martin, who drew a huge pointed cheer from the away fans the first time he caught the ball.

Chelsea simmered quietly for a while, with Mason Mount bright on the ball, but West Ham retreated profitably, sitting in a deep defensive tourniquet and inviting the home side to pick at the stitching.

The closest they came in the opening quarter was Reece James’s deflected cross on 21 minutes that swirled dangerously and hit the outside of the post.

Antonio really should have scored soon afterwards but could only nod Robert Snodgrass’s cross straight at Kepa Arrizabalaga.

Chelsea were increasingly muted, their attacks disrupted either by resolute defending or by the clumsy touches of their centre-forward. Towards half-time Martin produced an agile triple save from Mateo Kovacic’s shot and a couple of close rebounds, one from his own fumble. “England’s Number One,” sang the West Ham fans.

Giroud was then unable to finish right in front of goal, fooled by a last-ditch deflection on James’s fine cross.

Lampard clenched his fists with frustration as the half-time whistle blew and two minutes after the break West Ham took the lead. It was a brilliant finish from Cresswell, who ran on to Pablo Fornals’ pass, cut inside James with chastening ease, then snapped a low, hard right-foot shot into the far corner, hit so sweetly it was always out of Arrizabalaga’s reach.

West Ham might have had another just before the hour, Arrizabalaga saving well from Victor Ogbonna’s header direct from a corner.

Lampard sent for the slightly weary cavalry, throwing on Willian and Kanté with 28 minutes remaining. A little later Callum Hudson-Odoi replaced Giroud as Chelsea finished the game pressing hard but with no real sense of incision.

West Ham’s defence was led with poise by the excellent Ogbonna; but this was always Martin’s game.

Martin, embraced his father Alvin after an emotional Premier League debut at the age of 33 – and revealed he could hardly eat for two days in the build-up.

The former Millwall and MK Dons keeper pulled off a clean sheet on his top-flight debut as West Ham secured a surprise 1-0 victory at Stamford Bridge, with his dad, the former Hammers stalwart, watching from the stands.

Martin, who replaced Roberto in goal, said he was in tears as he walked into the crowd to hug Alvin, the former England defender who spent 20 years at West Ham between 1976 and 1996.

“It just doesn’t feel real,” he said afterwards. “I’m 33 now, I’ve had a decent career, I’ve played quite a few games but it still doesn’t prepare you coming into this. I’ve been struggling to eat for the last two days. Cress [Aaron Cresswell] was laughing at me because my plate kept being taken away and I couldn’t finish my food.

“When I saw my dad we were both in tears, so we didn’t actually say a lot. But for my dad to see that here with the club he played for for 21 years, to make my debut, keep a clean sheet and get the win for the boys more importantly, it’s just a fantastic feeling.”

David Martin hugs his dad Alvin after the final whistle. Photograph: Dave Shopland/BPI/Shutterstock

Manuel Pellegrini admitted he was relieved that a series of changes had paid off as his team ended an eight-match winless streak in all competitions. The Chilean’s job remains on the line but he felt the result could be a turning point.

“When you don’t win you are a beast and when you do you are a genius,” said Pellegrini. “For the team, for West Ham, for me and everyone, I think they did very well. But not only because I changed the goalkeeper. I think everyone produced the intensity you needed to win the game.”

Praising Martin’s debut, he said: “Of course, we know his family is linked with this club. It was not easy for him to make his first Premier League start. But I think that from the first time I spoke in the week with him I felt he was prepared. Before the game he was very quiet but he demonstrated what he needed throughout the 95 minutes.”

Aaron Cresswell’s neat finish sealed West Ham’s win, prompting a frustrated Frank Lampard to challenge his Chelsea side to produce a quick reaction in defeat.

“Shocked isn’t the word, I’m more disappointed,” said Lampard. “We didn’t perform the way we wanted to. But I do believe in the squad. There haven’t been many times I have said we were below par but today was one of those days. I don’t think it’s time for harsh reactions and judgments. It is time for a look at a bit of character to see our reaction.”


Chelsea 4-2-3-1: Arrizabalaga 7; James 6, Zouma 5.5, Tomori 6.5, Emerson 6; Jorginho 6.5 (Kante 63, 6), Kovacic 7; Pedro 6 (Willian 63, 5), Mount 7, Pulisic 7.5; Giroud 6 (Hudson-Odoi 71, 6)

Subs not used: Christensen, Cabellero, Batshuayi, Azpilicueta


Yellows: -

Manager: Frank Lampard

West Ham 4-1-4-1: Martin 6.5; Fredericks 7, Ogbonna 7, Balbuena 7, Cresswell 8; Noble 7.5, Rice 7; Snodgrass 7, Fornals 6.5, Anderson 6.5 (Yarmolenko 71, 6); Antonio 7 (Haller 76)

Subs not used: Zabaleta, Roberto, Sanchez, Ajeti

Goals: Cresswell 47

Yellows: Fornals, Yarmolenko

Manager: Manuel Pellegrini

Referee: Jonathan Moss 7

Attendance: 40,595


West Ham beat Chelsea at Stamford Bridge to lift pressure off Manuel Pellegrini

Sam Wallace, Chief Football Writer, at Stamford Bridge

At the end he was a like a Wimbledon singles champion, climbing into the stand in search of his father who was there to watch his son David Martin make his Premier League debut at 33 - 404 games and 16 years into a club career that had never previously known a day like this.

Martin’s father Alvin, a West Ham captain and England international, waited to embrace his son and choke back a few tears in the press-box, a memorable day for the Martin family and no small matter for the club either. This was West Ham’s first victory at Stamford Bridge since 2002 and it might be enough to keep Manuel Pellegrini in the job now that he seems to have shaken his dangerous habit of picking his favourite second-choice goalkeeper, the anxiety-inducing Roberto.

Pellegrini opted instead for Martin, the journeyman goalkeeper who has played for ten different clubs and has generally been a professional No 2 or injury-cover specialist, aside from seven years as first choice at MK Dons. The simple removal of Roberto from the equation, after shipping 20 goals in eight games, seemed to have a restorative effect on West Ham who kept a clean sheet and took their chance magnificently through Aaron Cresswell for the game’s only goal.

Asked about his decision to relegate Roberto to the bench and also replace the £45 million striker Sebastien Haller with Michail Antonio, the West Ham manager was in unusually effusive mood. “When you make a change and you don’t win you are a beast,” said Pellegrini, “and when you do you are a genius.” That might just count as the first joke of the season from a manager who registered his first win in eight league games just as life was starting to become intolerable.

Much to ponder for his opposite number, and former player, Frank Lampard who made five changes himself from the side that faced Valencia on Wednesday night and was left wondering once again whether this squad has the necessary depth. He said later that he still believed it did but it was hard to ignore the fact that he brought two World Cup winners into the team and neither Olivier Giroud nor Pedro looked up to the standard required.

By the end of the game both had been substituted and Lampard had switched to a deep-lying centre-forward with Christian Pulisic trying to occupy the West Ham centre-backs Angelo Ogbonna and Fabian Balbuena who both coped comfortably with aimless crossing into the box. Willian and N’Golo Kante, second half substitutes, gave Chelsea a much greater level of control and yet getting the equaliser was beyond them.

“The transfer ban has been spoken about a lot,” Lampard said later. “I believe in this squad. I made changes and of course there will be questions asked from the outside and from the inside. I don’t think this is any time for harsh reactions and judgements. It is time to look for a bit of character.”

They face Aston Villa on Wednesday with still some doubt over the fitness of striker Tammy Abraham who has quickly become crucial to Lampard’s plan. There was a tiredness in his players all over the pitch. The young right-back Reece James provided some excellent crosses from his side but he also bought Cresswell’s feint to shoot in the third minute of the second half before the West Ham full-back doubled back and drilled his shot past Kepa Arrizabalaga.

Antonio, only back from surgery the previous week, worked the Chelsea defenders hard and had a goal ruled out by the video assistant referee who judged that it had struck his hand before hitting the post and cannoning off the striker and into the net. In goal, Martin’s best moment came arguably in the first half when he saved from Mateo Kovacic, Giroud and then Pedro in the same sequence. The West Ham fans sang Martin’s name from the start in a variety of different songs, a kind of mock devotion to emphasise their relief that Roberto had been relieved of duties.

At the end of the game Martin sank to his knees with the emotion of the moment. Pellegrini said that beforehand the goalkeeper had been notably quiet, but confident. His performance must have come as quite a relief to his manager. "It still doesn't feel real,” Martin said. “I'm just pleased I got through it. I didn't let anyone down and actually I enjoyed it in the end.

"My dad didn't say much. I think we were both in tears. For my dad to play for the club for 21 years and see it, and for me to make my debut, keep clean sheet and get win for the boys, it is so pleasing. I was struggling to eat for two days [beforehand]. My plate was taken away because I couldn't eat my food.”

Unflappable as he generally is, Pellegrini said that his key challenge all week had been to convince the players not to abandon the attacking style which he wants them to play, in the good times and the bad. There was an excellent performance from his midfielder Declan Rice to match Antonio’s aggression in attack but this was the day of the third-choice goalkeeper who – for the time being at least – is surely now first choice.


Report: West Ham invite target Stefan Brian Fara for talks

By Jordan Harris

According to a report from The Sun on Sunday (1/12; page 67), West Ham United have invited Dinamo goalkeeper Stefan Brian Fara for talks ahead of a potential January move.

The goalkeeper situation looks set to be near the top of Manuel Pellegrini’s priority list heading into the winter window. Roberto was dropped on Saturday after a torrid time between the sticks.

West Ham fans will be hoping that Lukasz Fabianski will be back by the turn of the year. But Pellegrini is still seemingly setting his sights on bringing in a new signing.

The Sun on Sunday reports that the 18-year-old stopper has been invited for talks. Fara is yet to make his senior debut for the Romanian side. But that has not stopped the Hammers taking an interest.

It is also suggested by The Sun on Sunday that Fara qualifies for the Republic of Ireland. He was born in Dublin before being raised in Romania.

TBR View

With Fara yet to play for Dinamo’s first-team, it looks to be a move that West Ham hope to make with one eye on the future.

But while it may be some time before Hammers fans get to see him feature for the senior side, he will probably become a popular member of the squad amongst the supporters almost immediately if his arrival at the London Stadium paves the way for Roberto to leave.

Brum Live

Aston Villa and West Ham United linked with transfer swoop for French winger

Aston Villa have been linked with a move for out-of-contract winger Romain Alessandrini.

The Frenchman - most recently of LA Galaxy - is also said to have attracted interest from Brighton and Hove Albion, Watford and West Ham United.

Villa , along with their Premier League rivals, have reportedly made enquiries about the 30-year-old's availability, according to the Express.

The former Marseille man made just seven appearances in all competitions for the Galaxy last season, a knee operation limiting him to just five appearances in the MLS' regular season.

However, he did return for the play-offs and made two substitute appearances, coming off the bench to set up a goal apiece in the 2-1 win over Minnesota United and the quarter-final defeat to Los Angeles FC.

He is a free agent after his contract expired in November, with Fox Sports reporting last week that the Galaxy were in negotiations with the playmaker about a new deal.

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

Texas Iron 5:14 Sun Dec 1
Re: Sunday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Thanks Alan 2:40 Sun Dec 1
Re: Sunday newspapers (includes West Ham)
ted fenton 2:31 Sun Dec 1

ted fenton 2:31 Sun Dec 1
Re: Sunday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Mex Martillo 1:55 Sun Dec 1

gph 2:09 Sun Dec 1
Re: Sunday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks, Alan

Mex Martillo 1:55 Sun Dec 1
Re: Sunday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Far Cough 1:53 Sun Dec 1

Far Cough 1:53 Sun Dec 1
Re: Sunday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

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