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

Alan 11:58 Wed Dec 5
Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Juventus are considering making a bid for Manchester United's 25-year-old France midfielder Paul Pogba. (Sun)

Paris St-Germain and France forward Kylian Mbappe, 19, has revealed he turned down a move to Arsenal before his move to the Ligue 1 champions. (France Football via Metro)

Southampton want to finalise the appointment of former RB Leipzig boss Ralph Hasenhuttl as their new manager before Wednesday's match against Tottenham. (Guardian)

Everton hope loanee Andre Gomes' unwillingness to return to Barcelona will help to drive down the 25-year-old Portugal midfielder's price as they try to secure his permanent transfer. (Times)

Liverpool and Brazil midfielder Fabinho, 25, says there is no reason for him to join Paris St-Germain in January, despite being linked with a move. (UOL, via FourFourTwo)

LA Galaxy and former Sweden striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, 37, is in advanced talks over a return to AC Milan. (Goal)

Injured England striker Danny Welbeck, 28, will be allowed to leave Arsenal on a free transfer next summer. (Times - subscription required)

AC Milan want to sign Chelsea and France midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko on a permanent deal. The 24-year-old has been on loan at the Serie A giants since the summer. (Calciomercato)

Chelsea are ready to rival AC Milan for the signature of Barcelona's Spanish midfielder Denis Suarez, 24. (Express)

Manchester City could move for English 18-year-old Leeds United winger Jack Clarke in January. (Sun)

Monaco boss Thierry Henry wants to sign Watford's 29-year-old Italian striker Stefano Okaka, who is out of favour at Vicarage Road. (Mirror)

Arsenal hope to beat Bayern Munich and Barcelona to the signing of 23-year-old Ivory Coast winger Nicolas Pepe from Lille. (Mercato 365, via Talksport)

Fulham, Crystal Palace and West Ham are keen on Nantes' Argentine striker Emiliano Sala, 28. (Mirror)

Crystal Palace and Newcastle are tracking Real Betis and Spain Under-21 defender Junior Firpo, 22. (Sun)

Rangers manager Steven Gerrard is considering a loan move for Everton's England Under-21 midfielder Kieran Dowell, 21. (Mirror)

Former England and Liverpool midfielder Gerrard says the challenge of managing Rangers has helped fill a "huge void" in his life following retirement. (Telegraph)

Former Senegal striker El Hadji Diouf, 37, says he regrets joining Liverpool and wishes he had become a Manchester United player instead. (RMC via Sun)

Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho has hit out at the club's in-house MUTV channel, refusing to provide information about his squad for their trip to Arsenal. (Mail)

Manchester United are looking to recruit a new regional academy scout in London. (Manchester Evening News)

Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez is not thinking about a potential takeover of the club as he considers his January transfer plans. (Mirror)

Several Bolton players have told their agents to find them new clubs in January as the club's financial turmoil continues. (Mail)

Guardian Rumour Mill

Nick Ames

Somebody has just informed the Mill that we are halfway through a full schedule of midweek Premier League fixtures, but we all know how success and failure are really measured. They’re tallied up by sensational tittle-tattle like the following: roaring commercial success Paul Pogba is in the sights of Juventus, his former employers, who would quite nakedly like to get him playing football again. “A return?” queried the Juve sporting director Fabio Paratici. “We have discussed that many times.”
Manchester United form not down to relationship with players, says Mourinho
Read more

Those who feel passionate about sports brands – and who doesn’t? – will be giddy at the suggestion that Zlatan Ibrahimovic, that mind-alteringly hilarious old wag, could be on his way back to Milan. Serie A appears intent on partying like it’s, errm, 2012 so a string of uproarious social media memes and crowd-pleasing affectations might just be what the Rossoneri obsessive in your life gets for Christmas this year. The move from LA Galaxy might even be sealed before that, according to reports.

Are Manchester City about to raid the Championship? There is more than one suggestion that Jack Clarke, the 18-year-old Leeds winger, may soon be coming to a sleekly-produced behind-the-scenes documentary near you.

There is less certainty around the future of Danny Welbeck, who has endured rotten luck with injuries and will apparently find himself without a club at the end of this season – regardless of his recovery from a broken ankle. He’ll make a decent free transfer punt for someone. Arsenal might fill the void in their attack with Cengiz Ünder, the exciting Roma forward, who has been linked repeatedly for several days now.

Another player in the Gunners’ sights is Junior Firpo, a Real Betis full-back with a keen eye for goal. Crystal Palace and Newcastle have also been watching closely, though, and might be more attractive options if they can offer an instant place in the team. Manchester City are believed to be sniffing too, although that seems a slightly longer shot.

Paris Saint-Germain are in crisis after dropping points at the weekend. Who are they going to call? Young Ajax star Frenkie de Jong, if Kylian Mbappé has anything to do with it. The World Cup winner says De Jong would be “enormous for us” although Barcelona are said to be at the head of a very long queue. A fee of £66m, would supposedly get somebody their man.

Another youngsters making a – rather cheaper – move could be Everton’s Kieran Dowell. Steven Gerrard has his eyes on the blue half of Merseyside as he seeks a loan move for the playmaker, who he believes would add impetus to Rangers’ sensational tilt at the title.


West Ham’s Lucas Pérez takes advantage after Cardiff fluff penalty

Jacob Steinberg at the London Stadium

It was a harsh lesson for Cardiff about the realities of life at this level. After seeing Lukasz Fabianski save Joe Ralls’s limp penalty when this strange game was in the balance, they were forced to endure the indignity of West Ham strutting around long before the final whistle. Even Andy Carroll, given a chance to stretch his legs after returning from his latest injury, was joining in the fun as the impudent Felipe Anderson led the showboating in the closing stages.

Cardiff, two points above the bottom three, had to suck it up after wasting a chance to claim their first away win this season. It felt ominous for West Ham when Marko Arnautovic, their main source of inspiration, suffered a hamstring injury shortly before half-time. Nobody inside the London Stadium imagined West Ham would start the second half with a 12-minute blitz that featured the rare sight of a couple of piercing strikes from Lucas Pérez.

The former Arsenal striker’s first league goals since January 2017 provided the platform for Manuel Pellegrini to claim his first consecutive wins in the Premier League since replacing David Moyes as manager. West Ham, up to 12th place, are starting to sense the pieces are falling into place. They have an inviting run of fixtures over the Christmas period and find themselves five points off sixth.

However, their true level will remain hard to judge until they become sharper at both ends of the pitch. Pellegrini, who revealed Jack Wilshere was absent because of an ankle problem, was unhappy with his side for failing to kill off Cardiff when they were on top in the first 25 minutes. “We started very well,” he said. “After that we didn’t make good movements to create space.”

Having survived the early storm, Cardiff moved past the halfway line. The sudden threat caught West Ham by surprise and Arnautovic, who had seen a shot cleared off the line by Sean Morrison, gifted the visitors a penalty when he shoved Junior Hoilett. “Absolutely unnecessary,” Pellegrini said, though Fabianski came to the rescue when he smothered the timid effort.

As for Arnautovic, his night went from bad to worse when pain shot up his left hamstring as he tried to reach a pass from Anderson. The Austrian will be assessed on Wednesday, but he could face a long spell on the sidelines.

Cardiff sensed an opportunity to build on last Friday’s victory over Wolves at that stage. Neil Warnock had urged his players to target Michail Antonio, struggling at right-back because Ryan Fredericks was unavailable to fill in for Pablo Zabaleta, and the visitors pressed down the left flank at the start of the second half, another low cross from Joe Bennett finding Víctor Camarasa, who ought to have done better than fire against Arthur Masuaku from close range.

This time West Ham punished Cardiff’s profligacy, Camarasa’s error allowing Robert Snodgrass to lift a clever pass through to Pérez. Arnautovic’s replacement showed fine technique with a left-foot drive that had too much fizz for Etheridge.

Pérez has made little impact since his £4m move from Arsenal in the summer. Yet the Spaniard was in his element now, producing another accurate finish with his left foot after being released by Masuaku. “Lucas did very well,” Pellegrini said. “I hope he will continue in the same way.”

Cardiff’s woes increased when Antonio, shrugging off Harry Arter and darting in front of Callum Paterson, headed in Snodgrass’s corner in the 61st minute. “It showed we can win games away from home tonight,” Warnock said. “I pulled Manuel aside in the technical area and asked, ‘How can we be losing 3-0 to you?’ He went, ‘I don’t know’.

Warnock went on to bemoan the individual errors that led to West Ham’s goals. Josh Murphy’s late goal meant nothing.


West Ham 3-1 Cardiff: Lucas Perez scores twice at London Stadium

Michail Antonio was also on target for the Hammers as they followed up their 3-0 win at Newcastle with another three points

By Darren Lewis

Forgotten striker Lucas Perez gave West Ham back-to-back Premier League wins for the first time in nearly two years.

Lucas Perez of West Ham celebrates (Image: Getty Images)

Neil Warnock’s Cardiff side were send packing as the former Arsenal marksman climbed off the bench to score twice in five second-half minutes.

The strikes were Perez’s first in the League since he netted at Bournemouth for the Gunners in January 2017 - a gap of 700 days.

Coincidentally, that month was the last time West Ham won two in a row, beating Crystal Palace and Middlesbrough.

The move from boss Manuel Pellegrini to snap up Perez from the Emirates stiffs may just have been an inspired one as the club head into the busy Christmas period. Andy Carroll made a second-half substitute appearance, his first for three months, but the world and his wife knows the Hammers sadly cannot rely on his fitness.

What they can bank on is confidence being sky high after this win on the ack of Saturday’s 3-0 thumping of Newcastle at St James’s Park.

Injuries, inconsistency and politics have all served, in one way or another, to pull the rug from under the Hammers every time they have appeared to be turning a corner.

There was indeed frustration during the first half with the home fans concerned at the Hammers’ inability to raise their game against a side they were expected to beat.

Cardiff, fresh from pulling off a huge upset against Wolves last weekend, were proving stubborn opponents during the first 45 minutes.

Keeper Neil Etheridge saved well in the 20th-minute when Angelo Ogbonna powered in a header from a corner. Sean Morrison did well to block an effort from Marko Arnautovic and soon it was Cardiff’s turn to threaten.

Lukas Fabianski did well to parry a stinging, long-range drive from Victor Camarasa before Arnautovic bundled into the back of the goal hero against Wolves, Junior Hoilett. Penalty.

Joe Ralls will have nightmares about blowing the chance to take the lead in the 36th minute. His spot-kick was so weak that Fabianski was able to hold it.

Still, Cardiff were causing a few palpitations in east London and when Arnautovic went off a minute later with a suspected hamstring injury you feared the worst.

Enter Perez. Four minutes into the second half Robert Snodgrass released him in the box and the 30-year-old Spaniard made no mistake.

Four minutes later Mark Noble started off a move down the left which ended with Arthur Masuaku finding Perez again in the box. Same result. Etheridge beaten, this time by a diagonal strike.

On 61 minutes, Michael Antonio made it 3-0, guiding a header in from Robert Snodgrass’s corner.

Substitute Josh Murphy climbed off the bench to nod in a consolation in second-half injury time. And as Wolves found last week, it is way too soon to be writing Warnock’s side off.

Pellegrini’s in-form West Ham side, however, are just getting started.


Fulham, Crystal Palace and West Ham keen on Nantes hotshot

Only Kylian Mbappe and Neymar have scored more than the centre-forward's 11 goals in Ligue 1 so far

By Darren Lewis

Claudio Ranieri is rivalling Roy Hodgson and Manuel Pellegrini in the hunt for £15million Nantes forward Emiliano Sala.

The 28-year-old target man is the third most prolific striker in Ligue 1 this season having netted 11 times so for his club.

Only Neymar and Kylian Mbappe have scored more than the Argentine hitman.

Fulham boss Ranieri will be given another huge transfer kitty in January after succeeding Slavisa Jokanovic at Craven Cottage.

And he is keen on a reunion with Sala, with whom he worked last season.

But Roy Hodgson is also seeking more firepower with Crystal Palace among the lowest scorers in the Premier League this season.

Manuel Pellegrini has seen Javier Hernandez find his form at West Ham to support Marko Arnautovic.

The Mexican striker scored twice in the Hammers 3-0 win over Newcastle at the weekend.

Andy Carroll is also fit again but with the club unable to rely on his fitness Pellegrini is exploring alternatives.

Sala moved to Nantes in July 2015, having only made his professional debut for Bordeaux in February 2012.

He wants to sign a new contract with the Canaries, but his current deal runs out in June 2020 and the club want to cash in.

Nantes President Waldemar Kita wants around £25million for his man.

But the club are understood to be ready to listen to offers between £15-20million.

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

Mex Martillo 5:02 Wed Dec 5
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

pdbis 4:45 Wed Dec 5
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
I think Warlock needs to go to Specsavers.

Thames Ironworks 1:44 Wed Dec 5
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
violator 12:41 Wed Dec 5
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)

I thought exactly the same. Maybe his love child.

Thanks Alan

gph 1:43 Wed Dec 5
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks, Alan.

Given the choice of pressurising the "fullback" Mikhail Antonio or the "fullback" Arthur Masuaku, I'd pressurise Masuaku.

That's one of the reasons Cardiff lost, Colin. One of many.

boleyn8420 1:40 Wed Dec 5
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Bexley. I'm with you Warnock must be on drugs. He is right about one thing though when he said "How can we be losing 3-0 to you" because by reckoning we should have been winning by 5 or 6 then, so yes you cunt Warnock, how did you manage to keep it down to 3. Prick

Bexley Ironworks 1:32 Wed Dec 5
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

“It showed we can win games away from home tonight,” Warnock said. “I pulled Manuel aside in the technical area and asked, ‘How can we be losing 3-0 to you?’ He went, ‘I don’t know’.

What game was Warnock watching??

violator 12:41 Wed Dec 5
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Isn't that Arsene Wenger?

diehardhammer 12:38 Wed Dec 5
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
cheers alan, look forward to reading these threads everday

Thanks Alan 12:23 Wed Dec 5
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

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