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

Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Alan 1:20 Tue Sep 15
Other articles by Alan ...


Liverpool will wait until the final week of the transfer window to make an official move for Bayern Munich's Spain midfielder Thiago Alcantara, 29. (Talksport)

Manchester United are ready to offer Real Madrid's Gareth Bale, 31, a short-term deal, with an initial season-long loan, after losing patience with efforts to sign Borussia Dortmund's England winger Jadon Sancho, 20. (Sun)

But Wales forward Bale is not keen on a loan move. (Mail)

Manchester United fear increased competition for England winger Sancho next summer if they cannot prise him away from Borussia Dortmund in this transfer window. (ESPN)

Barcelona's Argentina playmaker Lionel Messi, 33, will be asked by club president Josep Maria Bartomeu to take a salary cut. (Deportes Cuatro - in Spanish)

Manchester City have offered £82m plus £4.5m in add-ons for Atletico Madrid's Uruguay defender Jose Gimenez, 25. (AS - in Spanish)

Turkish side Fenerbahce are in talks with Liverpool over signing Belgium striker Divock Origi, with Aston Villa, Newcastle, Brighton and Fulham also interested in the 25-year-old. (Mirror)

Arsenal could allow Lucas Torreira, 24, to leave on loan before the end of the transfer window, with Fiorentina and Torino both interested in signing the Uruguay midfielder. (Guardian)

If Manchester City or Paris St-Germain do not complete a deal for Senegal defender Kalidou Koulibaly by the weekend, Napoli are expected to take the 29-year-old off the market. (Football Italia)

Udinese and Argentina midfielder Rodrigo de Paul, 26, has said that a move to Leeds United is close - before deleting the update from Twitter. (Star)

Manchester United are in talks with Real Madrid for 23-year-old Spain international Sergio Reguilon. (Marca)

Sevilla, where Reguilon spent last season on loan, have signed Sporting's Argentina left-back Marcos Acuna, 28. (Evening Standard)

West Ham are considering another bid for England international defender James Tarkowski, 27, after Burnley rejected the latest offer, which amounted to £30m after add-ons. (Evening Standard)

Tottenham are offering Napoli's Poland international striker Arkadiusz Milik a £90,000-a-week contract and £5m signing-on fee. (Football Insider)

Spurs are also lining up a bid for Eintracht Frankfurt and Dutch striker Bas Dost, 31, following Jose Mourinho's complaints about the laziness of his squad. (Mail)

Barcelona forward Luis Suarez risks spending the season on the sidelines as he remains in a stand-off over his contract. The 33-year-old Uruguay international has been told to look for a new club but still has one year left on his deal. (ESPN)

Chelsea's English midfielder Conor Gallagher, 20, will join West Bromwich Albion on loan for the season and is set to sign a new deal at Stamford Bridge before the move is completed. (Football.London)

Arsenal's Argentine goalkeeper Emi Martinez, 28, is finalising a £20m move to Aston Villa after opting to leave the Gunners in search of guaranteed first-team football. (Evening Standard)

Aston Villa are also close to signing 25-year-old Burkina Faso striker Bertrand Traore from Lyon. (Telegraph, subscription required)

Tottenham are interested in signing Norway striker Alexander Sorloth, 24, according to Trabzonspor president Ahmet Agoglu. Sorloth is currently on loan with the Turkish club from Crystal Palace. (Independent)

Werder Bremen officials have confirmed an approach has been made by Aston Villa for their Kosovo midfielder Milot Rashica, 24. (Deichstube, via Birmingham Mail)

Aston Villa have offered English striker Keinan Davis, 22, a new three-year contract. (Football Insider)

USA goalkeeper Zack Steffen, 25, is set to make his Manchester City debut in the Carabao Cup third round next week. (Manchester Evening News)

Guardian Rumour Mill

Tom Davies

The Mill has often wondered whether “Gareth Bale’s perpetual Real Madrid limbo” would make a good band name, or Fall album title, or the sort of racehorse Alan Partridge might have called home in The Day Today. Whatever, said “limbo” continues to offer rich pickings for the gossip-mongers, with Manchester United once again touted as candidates to bring the Wales forward back to the Premier League.

With their pursuit of Jadon Sancho careering up ever more cul-de-sacs, United are considering offering Bale a one-year loan deal with an option to extend, according to the Sun. It adds that Madrid could demand an £18.5m transfer fee rather than a loan, while the Daily Mail reckons Bale isn’t so keen and the Old Trafford club would be unlikely to supplant Wales and golf in his personal pecking order.

Liverpool are understood to still be preparing a late raid for Bayern Munich’s Thiago Alcântara. The Premier League champions have been front-runners for the 29-year-old’s signature for a while, but will wait till the last knockings of the current transfer window to launch their bid, TalkSport tells us. Having seen his side ship three goals in slightly scattergun fashion at the weekend, Jürgen Klopp is also interested in the Sampdoria centre-back Omar Colley. The 27-year-old Gambia international, valued at €5m, has played 52 times for the Serie A side since signing from Genk in 2018.

Over in east London, West Ham are stepping up their interest in Burnley’s James Tarkowski as the London Stadium powers that be seek to calm an already mutinous mood. The Clarets have already rejected one offer for the centre-half but the Evening Standard insists West Ham are undeterred, though they will have to offer a minimum of £30m. In brighter gossip for the Hammers faithful, Declan Rice is apparently not going to Chelsea to join his mate Mason Mount.

Talking of London-based hotbeds of discontent, Tottenham are reportedly prepared to offer Napoli’s Arkadiusz Milik £90,000 a week and a £5m signing-on fee in a bid to crank their creaking attack into life. But they may have to shell out £30m to the Serie A club if they are to sign him in this window rather than the next one, according to Football Insider. And it still might not be enough, what with Roma front-runners to net the Pole. Spurs are also interested in Eintracht Frankfurt’s Dutch striker Bas Dost if/when the Milik deal doesn’t come off.

Udinese midfielder Rodrigo De Paul has teased the Leeds fanbase by indicating on Twitter that he was definitely on his way to Elland Road before deleting it. Leeds remain firm favourites to sign the Argentina international nonetheless.

And Celtic aren’t taking no for an answer from Charlton in their pursuit of the 20-year-old midfielder Alfie Doughty. The Scottish champions have had two bids rebuffed by the stricken League One club and are now thought to be preparing an improvement on the £650,000 offer they had turned down last time.


American consortium to step up efforts to buy West Ham after first bid rejected

Opening offer of £350m was rejected last month
Owners David Sullivan and David Gold unpopular with fans

Jacob Steinberg

An American consortium proposing a takeover of West Ham is preparing an improved offer for the club after its opening bid of £350m was rejected last month.

David Gold and David Sullivan, who bought the club in 2010, have seen their standing with supporters plummet since the move to the London Stadium in 2016 and tensions were further inflamed following Grady Diangana’s £18m sale to West Brom this month.

The relationship between the board and supporters has deteriorated since West Ham left Upton Park, promising that moving to a new home with a 60,000 capacity would help the club to challenge English football’s elite. Gold, Sullivan and Karren Brady, the vice-chair, faced furious protests during a home game against Burnley in 2018 and supporter groups staged anti-board demonstrations this year. The feeling against the trio is strong.

It is understood the would-be buyers, who are involved in US sport, lodged a bid in the first week of August. Their valuation was based on the proposed £300m takeover of Newcastle by a Saudi Arabian consortium, plus an extra £50m because of West Ham’s London location. The offer was rebuffed by Sullivan, who owns a majority shareholding of 51.5%. The 71-year-old does not want to give up control. London Stadium sources question the strength of the group’s interest and pointed out that Premier League clubs receive inquiries on a regular basis.

While the bidders were told in strong terms that West Ham are not for sale, Sullivan did raise the possibility of them buying a minority stake. But the consortium wants to buy the club outright and will only consider a partial sale in return for a controlling interest.

Sullivan is the most powerful figure at West Ham, who narrowly avoided relegation last season. Gold, who owns 35.1%, has far less influence. It is understood that Tripp Smith, an American investor who owns 10% of the club, is not involved in the bid.

A fresh bid is expected in the next month, although one complication is the deal under which West Ham moved to the London Stadium includes an agreement that Sullivan and Gold will have to pay financial penalties to the taxpayer if the club are sold before March 2023. The bidders aim to reach a figure large enough to soften that blow.

West Ham’s finances have been hit by the Covid-19 pandemic. The owners arranged a rights issue to raise £30m during lockdown and David Moyes, the manager, does not have a big budget for new signings during this transfer window.

West Ham, who pay £2.5m a year to rent the London Stadium, made a pre‑tax loss of £28.8m in the last financial year. Their latest accounts said: “The group’s principal risk remains that of the football club being relegated … with the serious financial consequences which follow.”

The accounts also revealed Sullivan and Gold were paid a combined £2.9m in interest in August 2019 on the loans they gave to the club in 2010 and that a further £1m was paid to GGI international, a company related to Gold, in respect of a partial repayment of loan capital. As of 31 May 2019 the combined balance of unsecured loans advanced by Sullivan and Gold amounted to £45m. The highest-paid director at the club was Brady, whose salary rose from £898,000 to £1.136m.

West Ham insisted they took the decision to sell Diangana reluctantly, arguing that the academy graduate’s departure would provide Moyes with funds to strengthen in key areas. Yet there was further unrest when the captain, Mark Noble, tweeted that he was “sad and angry” to see Diangana leave.

There have still been no signings and West Ham, who want the Burnley centre-back James Tarkowski, were poor when they lost 2-0 against Newcastle in their opening league game on Saturday. They are under pressure to bring in new players before the window shuts next month.


West Ham 'to fund £5m Rob Holding loan deal' with Arsenal future in the balance

West Ham are willing to pay £5m to sign Rob Holding on loan from Arsenal, after the defender's loan move to Newcastle was blocked by Mikel Arteta

By Matthew Cooper

West Ham United are reportedly set to offer Arsenal £5m to sign defender Rob Holding on a season-long loan, despite Gunners boss Mikel Arteta claiming the 24-year-old is "not going anywhere".

The Hammers are desperate for defensive reinforcements, with manager David Moyes highlighting their lack of depth at centre-back after his side's opening day loss to Newcastle.

Moyes has just three senior centre-backs to call on in the form of Fabian Balbuena, Angelo Ogbonna and Issa Diop, meaning he currently has to rely on midfielder Declan Rice and youngsters like Goncalo Cardoso to provide back-up.

The Scotsman said: "I think that defensively we have been short of numbers and the competition that I want so that has been a problem.

"If we get an injury or suspension then we will be really short. We are trying to get players in. Let me tell you, there are plenty getting offered.

"We're trying to get ones in who will have a similar impact to Tomas Soucek and Jarrod Bowen, people we feel can go forward with us. But yes, we want to add to that department."

The £18m they received from West Bromwich Albion for talented winger Grady Diangana is expected to be reinvested on a defender and the Sun are reporting that Holding is on their radar.

The defender looked set to join Newcastle on loan but Arteta stopped the move because of injury problems, with David Luiz, Pablo Mari, Calum Chambers, Sokratis Papastathopoulos and Shkodran Mustafi missing their opening Premier League clash with Fulham.

As a result, Holding started that game and impressed, with Arteta telling BT Sport after the game: "I said to him, change your mind because you are not going anywhere.

"Rob is another one that stands for every value that we want at the football club. He had a really difficult time but he trained and pursued his dream to play for this football club.

"Now why would I have to let him go? You are already playing so what else do you want?"

However, as players return from injury and new signings Gabriel Magalhaes and William Saliba are bedded into the first team, Holding could still be shipped out on loan and West Ham are willing to pay £5m to bring him to the London Stadium.

Planet Football

The story of Jonathan Calleri: Mad rabonas & another West Ham disaster

By Michael Lee

Prolific strikers are to West Ham United what perspective is to Roy Keane – attainable, yet always somehow elusive.

Under the ownership of David Gold and David Sullivan, West Ham have purchased 45 (vidiprinter: forty-five) forward players with varying degrees of disaster. A significant amount of churn has taken place to move the Hammers from relegation battlers to underachievers fighting relegation.

Yet some players make so little mark they somehow become more alluring, like Jonathan Calleri.

Signed from Uruguayan second division outfit Deportivo Maldonado in 2016, Calleri made 16 appearances for the club and scored only one goal. However, his story leads to a wider web of intrigue about third-party ownership and the mechanics of South American football.

Travel to Maldonado, Uruguay’s seventh-largest city, and you will find the local side, Deportivo, playing in front of crowds lower than 300. Yet the club has a history of selling players to wealthier clubs – Everton’s new signing Allan joined Vasco de Gama in 2009 while Alex Sandro moved to Juventus two years later. The catch? None of these players ever played a game for Deportivo Maldonado.

Quickly scouring the internet, it becomes apparent the club are swimming in the murky waters of third-party ownership. In fact, the club are owned by two English investors: Malcolm Caine (a racehorse owner) and Graham Shear (a London-based lawyer). Together, they bought the club to ‘ease the tax burden of investors who own transfer rights’. While this does not contravene FIFA rules on the matter, the club are undeniably playing a dangerous game.

Enter West Ham. The summer of 2016 saw Slaven Bilic’s entertainers move to the London Stadium looking for a prolific striker to fire their push for Champions League qualification (pride is always highest before a fall). After being rejected by the likes of Alexandre Lacazette and Michy Batshuayi, the club ended up with a buffet of strikers that was more bargain bucket than gourmet.

Alongside the legendarily bad Simone Zaza, Gokhan Tore and Sofaine Feghouli was the unknown Calleri. When asked about his signature in a pre-match interview, Bilic claimed to have signed a “top striker”, showing the same commitment to dishonesty that got Laurent Blanc sent off in the 1998 World Cup semi-final.

Calleri, to be fair, had previously scored this rabona for Boca Juniors, which was enough to set the pulses racing of some West Ham fans.

Calleri initially made little impression, beyond sparking the realisation for supporters that here was a player whose second touch was a tackle. As West Ham struggled in their new stadium and slipped into their natural habitat of the bottom six, chances were few and far between for the young Argentine.

His first, and only, goal for the Hammers came in a January win at Middlesbrough. Already leading 2-1, the substitute struck an effort in the general direction of the goal. Happily, on this occasion, the advertising hoarding-bound shot deflected of Boro’s Adam Clayton and ended up in the net. Calleri peeled away with a look of disbelieving delight etched on his face, mirroring that of the travelling supporters.

Despite this exhibition of quality football, Calleri would have to wait three further months for his first league start. This came in April’s home match with Everton, a game West Ham needed points from to ease lingering relegation worries. As the hot spring sun shone across east London, Calleri must have felt emboldened to attack this rare opportunity.

Fittingly, the game passed without almost any incident whatsoever. After 24 touches, producing one of the more hilarious heatmaps in recent memory, Calleri was replaced by commitment’s Diafra Sakho. As if mirroring the impact of West Ham’s starting striker, the match ended in a forgettable stalemate.

Poundshop Messi

Calleri’s defining moment was still to come. As West Ham and Stoke ground their way towards another goalless draw, Calleri found himself with the chance to become the match-winning hero – all he had to do was sidefoot the ball either side of Shay Given. Inexplicably, this was the moment Jonathan decided to transform into the poundshop Messi.

Instead of slotting home, Calleri attempted football’s least appropriate rabona ever. It goes without saying the effort hit Given straight in the midriff and the match ended level. West Ham did not pay the £16million to make his loan stay a permanent one.

Since his spell in east London, Calleri has toured the Spanish peninsula turning out for Las Palmas, Alaves and Espanyol, never scoring more than nine goals a season despite even this modest figure seeming like a misprint. This season, Jonathan will ply his trade for Osasuna. It is his sixth loan spell away from Deportivo Maldonado, for whom he is still yet to kick a ball.

Last season, Calleri appeared back on English radars after notching a hat-trick for Espanyol in their Europa League exit to Wolves. This performance prompted amazed incomprehension from West Ham supporters, whose club have failed to score a single goal against Wolves since the Midlanders’ return to the Premier League.

Maybe Calleri wasn’t played enough or maybe he just wasn’t good enough. Truth is, West Ham’s scattergun approach to recruitment means we shall never know if Calleri could have blossomed into something more.

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

With Kind Regards 6:47 Tue Sep 15
Re: Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Mex Martillo 5.05

Mex Martillo 5:05 Tue Sep 15
Re: Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
bill green 1:35 Tue Sep 15

Texas Iron 3:38 Tue Sep 15
Re: Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)

bill green 1:35 Tue Sep 15
Re: Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan 1:22 Tue Sep 15

Thanks Alan 1:22 Tue Sep 15
Re: Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
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