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Alan 12:37 Mon Sep 24
Monday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Manchester United defender Chris Smalling is set to sign a new deal at Old Trafford. The 28-year-old England international has less than 12 months remaining on his current contract. (Star)

Borussia Dortmund and Germany midfielder Mario Gotze, 26, has been urged to join his former manager Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool. (Sky Sports)

David Beckham has held preliminary talks with former Real Madrid team-mate Zinedine Zidane about managing his Inter Miami side in the MLS. (Mirror)

Wolves have put a £110m valuation on Portugal midfielder Ruben Neves, 21. (Times - subscription required)

Newcastle United manager Rafael Benitez hopes Magpies owner Mike Ashley "will be ready to do something to help" after watching the side's goalless draw against Crystal Palace. (Telegraph)

Manchester United's attempts to find a winner in their draw against Wolves on Saturday "was just like watching Wimbledon in the 80s", says former Celtic and Blackburn striker Chris Sutton. (Mail)

Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba, 25, wants the team to be allowed to be more attacking in their play. (Mail)

Barcelona midfielder Sergio Busquets, 30, is set to sign a new deal with the Spanish champions. (ESPN)

Chelsea and Belgium midfielder Eden Hazard, 27, says he feels "200% fit" despite being rested by manager Maurizio Sarri in midweek. He returned to the Blues' starting line-up in Sunday's goalless draw with West Ham. (Sky Sports)

Besiktas' 25-year-old German goalkeeper Loris Karius - who is on loan from Liverpool - says he is taking inspiration from former Germany goalkeeper Oliver Kahn after his Champions League final nightmare. (Bild - in German)

Everton players think they are doing too much preparation for Premier League games under boss Marco Silva. (Sun)

Arsenal defender Matteo Guendouzi, 19, says fellow Frenchmen and Gunners legends Thierry Henry and Patrick Vieira made him "fall in love" with the club. (L'Equipe - in French)

Spanish giants Real Madrid have announced plans for a £500m redesign of the Bernabeu. (Mail)

West Brom want to bring Northern Premier League Hednesford Town's English forward Lewis Archer, 20, to The Hawthorns as they aim to discover the next non-league star. (Express & Star)

Former referees' chief Keith Hackett believes Arsenal striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's goal against Everton should not have stood as he was "clearly offside" and highlights a failure by assistant referees to make a "big call". (Telegraph)

Manchester United midfielder Nemanja Matic has been revealed as the anonymous donor who gave €70,000 so that a four-year-old from his native Serbia could receive treatment for a rare cancer. (Mirror)

Guardian Rumour Mill

Barry Glendenning

Long rumoured to have his eye on José Mourinho’s job at Manchester United, Zinedine Zidane is today reported to have held “preliminary talks” with his former teammate David Beckham about managing his new Inter Miami franchise. With no players, no stadium and no games scheduled until the 2020 MLS season, the new expansion team won’t take a whole lot of managing at the moment, but Beckham has already said he wants “to create the biggest club in the USA and so that means attracting some of the biggest players”. While a high-profile manager would help attract the kind of marquee signings Beckham is after, it seems implausible to think Zidane won’t get a better offer between now and Inter Miami’s maiden MLS season.

A couple of months ago, Zidane was rumoured to be taking on a new role as technical director at his former club Juventus, but the Serie A side torpedoed the notion by pointing out that the position is already occupied by Pavel Nedved. Today, reports from Italy suggest the Serie A club’s chairman Andrea Agnelli likes the cut of Leroy Sané’s jib and will try to sign him from Manchester City in the next couple of years.
Record-breaking Jorginho the beating heart of Chelsea’s mangled midfield
Read more

Wolves’ Rúben Neves is a creative midfielder in big demand but will not be sold for a penny less than £110m, according to The Times. Both Manchester City and Manchester United are reported to be interested in the 21-year-old, who was the subject of praise from José Mourinho over the weekend. “These two Portuguese boys, they are both the kind of player that likes to bite, to press,” said Mourinho of Neves and his team-mate Joao Moutinho, in the wake of Wolves’ spirited draw with United at Old Trafford. “They don’t give a long time for you to have the ball, to turn, one touch, two touches, you don’t have much of that.”

Fulham are hoping to make a Premier League player of Maxwel Cornet, who was so impressive in Lyon’s victory at Manchester City in the Champions League last week. The Cottagers were unsuccessful in their bid to sign the 21-year-old winger in the most recent transfer window, but will ramp up their interest in January.

Despite Tottenham Hotspur’s dogged summer pursuit of Jack Grealish, Aston Villa raised eyebrows by refusing to sell their young star and now reports from the Midlands suggest the 23-year-old’s representatives have opened talks with his employers over a new deal. With less than two years left on his current deal, the Villa CEO, Christian Purslow, and owner, Nassef Sawiris, are eager to discuss new terms that would make Grealish the highest paid player at the club and mean that any future suitors would have to pay the Championship club top dollar to lure him away.

And finally, still without employment after leaving Dundee at the end of August, Steven Caulker is wanted by both Aston Villa and Wigan Athletic. The 26-year-old central defender has also been linked with a move to Arsenal Kiev and seems unlikely to be without a club for too long.


Chelsea drop first points of season as West Ham dig in for hard-earned draw

Jason Burt, Chief Football Correspondent, at the London Stadium

Chelsea may be only two points behind Liverpool at the top of the Premier League but they are “maybe one year” in arrears in where they are as a team, their head coach, Maurizio Sarri, claimed.

Following this goalless draw with West Ham United, a London derby that could have been lost as easily as it could have been won, Chelsea will face Liverpool in a double-header.

There is the Carabao Cup tie at Anfield on Wednesday, for which Sarri said he would “maybe have to change 11 players, maybe only five”, and then there is the Premier League meeting next weekend at Stamford Bridge. The expectation was that both teams would go into Saturday’s fixture with six wins from six League matches, which would have been unprecedented in the English top flight. Instead, it is Liverpool who remain in pristine condition, and who have the advantage, with Sarri arguing they are ahead of his team. Chelsea remain unbeaten but are far from perfect.

“We have to play against a very, very good team. Against a team who have worked with the same coach for three or four years,” Sarri said. “They are a step forward of us at this moment. We have started to work altogether 35-40 days ago and, 40 days ago less 10 for the international break, so, for us, it’s a bit early. We have to work then maybe, in one year, we will be at the same level as Liverpool.”

Given that Chelsea won the title only two years ago, that may not be an assessment shared by the club’s hierarchy, although it is undoubtedly true that having come in with pre-season preparations already underway, Sarri has done a very impressive job.

There was a clear piece of evidence of “Sarri-ball” here – with midfielder Jorginho attempting 180 passes, the most by any player in the Premier League since 2003-04, but there was also food for thought as West Ham provided further evidence of recovery after their disappointing start to the season.

Predictably, manager Manuel Pellegrini set them up to defend deep, almost deliberately to surrender possession but also to hit hard on the counter-attack – which they did to great effect. Pellegrini also instructed his players to force Chelsea to play down their right and therefore have to rely more on Cesar Azpilicueta, who is far less of an attacking threat than Marcos Alonso and Eden Hazard.

Disappointing for Chelsea was the performance of Hazard, who had been excused the midweek trip to Greece in the Europa League but did not repay that with the kind of dominant display of which he is so capable. Instead, Hazard almost appeared hesitant at times as he twice attempted to tee up substitute Alvaro Morata rather than shoot. Both Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi would have taken the shot.

It was an odd game. Close to the final whistle, the stadium announcer declared Andriy Yarmolenko as the man of the match – the West Ham forward who missed a sitter and gifted Chelsea their best chance.

Not that Yarmolenko played badly. Nor did West Ham. Far from it. They could have won if Michail Antonio had not wasted two clear first-half chances. They sorely missed Marko Arnautovic, who failed to recover from a knee injury, but having lost their first four League games, West Ham built on the confidence of winning at Everton last weekend with, in particular, Declan Rice anchoring the midfield with power and authority.

The 19-year-old again impressed and created a formidable defensive barrier against Chelsea, who were sluggish. Olivier Giroud was a disappointment at centre-forward.

Antonio, who took that position in the West Ham line-up, was given his first opportunity through a clever counter-attack, with Felipe Anderson tricking his way past Azpilicueta to release the forward who then blazed over the bar.

Soon after, Yarmolenko worked his way into the penalty area, after being picked out by Rice. The ball broke to Antonio, whose first-time, close-range shot was parried at the near post by goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga with his left leg.

Chelsea came to life once Morata replaced Giroud, although it probably had more to do with the urgency of the clock running down. They had their best chance as Yarmolenko clumsily failed to clear a cross which inadvertently rebounded off David Luiz and into Morata’s path. He attempted to flick a first-time shot over Lukasz Fabianski only for it to strike the goalkeeper flush in the face and rebound clear.

Fabianski was left dazed but it was West Ham who should have delivered the knockout blow when substitute Robert Snodgrass picked out Yarmolenko. At the far post and unmarked, he surely had to head into the net but sent the ball wide. “Maybe it seemed easier to score than miss. Maybe he relaxed a bit more,” Pellegrini said. Either way, it was bad.

Would Chelsea capitalise? N’Golo Kante skied over and then, in injury time, Jorginho found substitute Ross Barkley, who drove a tricky cross-shot which Fabianski did well to turn around the post.

Had Chelsea won, Sarri would have become only the third manager – after one of his predecessors at Chelsea, Carlo Ancelotti, and Manchester City’s Pep Guardiola – to have won his first six games in the Premier League but, in truth, his team never quite did enough. Next up, it is Liverpool and what Sarri said could be a “spectacular” match. This one was not that.


West Ham player ratings vs Chelsea: Fabianski impresses – but surprise ace steals the show

WEST HAM held firm to secure a goalless draw against Chelsea at the London Stadium.

By Michael Potts

West Ham have shaken off their dire early-season form for good after a handy draw against Chelsea at the London Stadium.

The Hammers should've have won the game but Andriy Yarmolenko and Michail Antonio couldn't make the most of their big chances.

Lukasz Fabianski and Declan Rice were among the top performers for West Ham, but they may have been outshone by an unlikely hero.

Pablo Zabaleta faced the daunting task of shutting down Chelsea superstar Eden Hazard and he was more than up to the challenge with a fantastic display – at the back and going forward.

Lukasz Fabianski – 7

The most consistent performer for West Ham this season. Fabianski dealt admirably with the half-chances fired his way and commanded his area well.

Pablo Zabaleta – 8

Much of the build-up focused on Eden Hazard, but the veteran full-back completely shut him down and even provided an attacking threat. A terrific display.

Issa Diop – 7

Calm, composed, assured. Everything you need from a centre-back without ever being tested to his limits.

Fabian Balbuena – 7

His role was uncertain at the start of the season but he's growing into a real presence. Balbuena's partnership and understanding with Diop is already blossoming.

Arthur Masuaku – 6

Caught out at the back more than once. He's a decent attacker, but needs to be more disciplined in defence.

Mark Noble – 7

Worked hard for the team. The Hammers may need more creativity in the shape of Jack Wilshere against teams around them, but he was suited to today's game.

Declan Rice – 8

Growing in confidence with every game. Rice stayed calm and grafted hard despite lining up opposite N'Golo Kante, Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic.

Pedro Obiang – 7

Like his midfield counterparts, Obiang was tough and gutsy. However, the Hammers may need more pace and creativity going forward.

Andriy Yarmolenko – 6

Missed the biggest chance of the game. He will be an effective player at the London Stadium given his dribbling abilities, but today wasn't his finest outing.

Michail Antonio – 5

Failed to take his chances and therefore failed to make the most of Marko Arnautovic's injury. Full of running, but needed an end product.

Felipe Anderson – 5

Ran into corners and was closed out of the game by the Blues' defensive stars.


Declan Rice was released by Chelsea at 14 - five years later he showed why England want him

Rice was let go as a 14-year-old by Chelsea and showed why England want to nab him from the Republic of Ireland's clutches

By Matt Lawless

It is easy to forget sometimes that Declan Rice is just 19.

The West Ham teenager produced yet another accomplished performance as the Hammers held Chelsea to a goalless draw at the London Stadium.

So assured, in fact, that neither Eden Hazard and Olivier Giroud got a look in.

Rice stood out and brilliantly absorbed the pressure of facing arguably one of the finest midfields on offer in the Premier League as West Ham put a dent in the Blues 100 per cent start to the season.

He also served a reminder to Chelsea of a top talent they let go to waste.

Maurizio Sarri did not start a single English player on Sunday. Ross Barkley made a late cameo - and almost scored. But not one Chelsea academy graduate was on their bench.

You could say it highlights the quality the Blues have at their disposal. Make no mistake, Chelsea have a catalogue of outstanding youngsters. Yet none are banging down the doors of their starting XI.

That opens an opportunity for English youngsters at other clubs to make an impression when it comes to future Three Lions call-ups - including former Cobham-based kid Rice.

On this evidence, you can easily see why Gareth Southgate has been keeping Rice closely monitored.

The midfielder - named by Hammers legend Tony Gale as the best ‘defensive player’ at West Ham - was released by Chelsea at 14, having started their as a seven-year-old.

Fast forward five years, Rice is a regular Premier League starter (unlike Barkley and Ruben Loftus-Cheek) and now finds himself at the centre of an international wrangle.

Republic of Ireland are desperate to retain him. After three caps, they see him as a future captain.

The word is Gareth Southgate - who names his next England squad the weekend after next - is a keen admirer and could exploit the loophole of Rice not playing in a ‘competitive’ international for the Irish.

And it’s easy to see why. With Southgate voicing concerns over limited options currently at his disposal, Rice fits the style Southgate likes to play. He can play as an anchor or slot in anywhere at the back.

Make no mistake, there is more to come from Rice. He is still learning on the job.

He will face further challenges along the way but the manner in which he frustrated Chelsea through the middle and managed to keep the West Ham ticking, Rice is certainly destined for a long stay at the top.

Only time will tell whether that is with England or Ireland.

Indeed, time will tell how long he stays at West Ham. The club are yet to offer him a new deal. And plenty of big clubs will be sniffing around.

Given all the millions they spent over the summer, the smartest investment West Ham could make next would be to offer Rice a long-term contract befitting of his talents and professionalism.

Rice is a perfect example of how a young professional should conduct himself, both on and off the field.

That makes Rice the future for West Ham. And, if he carries on in this manner, maybe he is for England too.

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

Alan 2:52 Mon Sep 24
Re: Monday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Alwaysaniron 1:58 Mon Sep 24

I'm taking the baroness away for a dirty weekend this week, so I'll see what I can do.

Alwaysaniron 1:58 Mon Sep 24
Re: Monday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan


Not you Al of course... Unless you can influence those on the board :)

chim chim cha boo 1:49 Mon Sep 24
Re: Monday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan.

gph 1:19 Mon Sep 24
Re: Monday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks, Alan.

Thanks Alan 1:12 Mon Sep 24
Re: Monday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Takashi Miike 12:41 Mon Sep 24

Takashi Miike 12:41 Mon Sep 24
Re: Monday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

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