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Alan 1:02 Sun Dec 16
Sunday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Manchester United want to sell France midfielder Paul Pogba, 25, in January. (Sunday Mirror)

United boss Jose Mourinho says he does not know if the club will back him in the January transfer window. (Observer)

Chelsea are hoping to agree a fee with Borussia Dortmund for 20-year-old USA midfielder Christian Pulisic, raising doubts over the future of 18-year-old England Under-19 winger Callum Hudson-Odoi who is being tracked by RB Leipzig and Monaco. (Mail on Sunday)

Barcelona have made an offer for Chelsea's 22-year-old Danish centre-back Andreas Christensen. (Sport - in Spanish)

However, Barcelona head coach Ernesto Valverde says he is not interested in signing a new centre-back in the January transfer window. (Goal)

Arsenal have been offered Barcelona's 24-year-old Spaniard Denis Suarez for a cut-price £14m in January. (Sun on Sunday)

West Ham are looking to take Manchester United's Brazilian midfielder Andreas Pereira, 22, on loan in January. (Sunday Mirror)

Everton want to sign RB Leipzig forward Jean-Kevin Augustin, 21, but could have to pay £38m for the Frenchman. (Sun on Sunday)

Southampton's Northern Ireland midfielder Steven Davis, 33, is open to a return to Rangers next month, after starting just two games this season. (Mail on Sunday)

Arsenal want Boca Juniors' 22-year-old Argentine winger Cristian Pavon - but he will cost £40m. (Sun on Sunday)

Meanwhile, the Gunners have made a formal offer for Cengiz Under, Roma's 21-year-old Turkish winger. (Tuttomercatoweb, via Talksport)

Fulham are to compete with Cardiff City for the signing of Nantes' Argentine striker Emiliano Sala, 28. (Mail on Sunday)

The progress of Willem II's Spanish striker Fran Sol is being monitored by Rangers and Celtic. (Daily Record)

Costa Rican goalkeeper Keylor Navas, 32, will not leave Real Madrid in January. (Marca)

Inter Milan's Argentina forward Mauro Icardi, 25, says talks are still ongoing with the club over his contract renewal. (Goal)

PSV Eindhoven coach Mark van Bommel has spoken to 34-year-old Dutch midfielder Arjen Robben about a return to the club. Robben will leave Bayern Munich at the end of the season. (Bild - in German)

The owner of London Stadium has predicted that the legal costs of its disputes with West Ham will total £5m for the three years to the end of its present financial year. (Sunday Times - subscription required)


West Ham’s Felipe Anderson underlines Claudio Ranieri’s problems at Fulham

John Brewin at Craven Cottage

Claudio Ranieri’s reign at Fulham has been less “new manager bounce”, more the dull thud of the reality that he has inherited a squad not suited to the Premier League. Four points from the five matches he has presided over is not a collection rate that will keep Fulham from the Championship.

The Italian pronounced this the best performance of that short reign but his statistical read-out of the game pinpointed where West Ham had won the match. “We shoot at goal 16 times,” said Ranieri. “They created two counterattacks and they scored. Our counterattack was not good.” Another pair of bald statistics are that Fulham stayed bottom of the Premier League and have not kept a clean sheet in their last 21 top-division matches.

Felipe Anderson was the difference, supplying the key passes that turned those counterattacks into West Ham’s two goals. For the first, smashed in by Robert Snodgrass from the edge of the box in the 17th minute, Anderson’s turn of foot and change of pace left the Fulham right-back Denis Odoi for dead, allowing him time to lay up Snodgrass to score. For the second, 12 minutes later, with Odoi again left chasing shadows on the touchline, Anderson’s cross teed up Javier Hernández to flick the ball on for Michail Antonio to slot in.

Both goals came against the run of play. Fulham were on the attack throughout the first half, with Aboubakar Kamara having the best of the chances, but were unable to beat Lukasz Fabianski; the Polish goalkeeper is another big reason for West Ham being on their upward curve.

The spirit Ranieri had hailed in his programme notes appeared to have been extinguished by half-time. As the sodden conditions the game was played in turned to ice, so did the game. West Ham saw out the second 45 minutes with ease, bar one hurried clearance from Fabián Balbuena after Tom Cairney had escaped to the byline. Fulham’s previous bustle had been extinguished.

As Declan Rice strolled through midfield the home team were accepting of their fate. Anderson had a chance to score the goal his performance deserved but his header was weak.

With four wins from their last four matches, the club’s best run since February 2014, Pellegrini has his team playing something along the mythical lines of the “West Ham Way”. They are scoring goals and also likely to concede at any moment even if they did see out this London derby with a clean sheet collected with efficiency.

After the painful austerity under Slaven Bilic and David Moyes last season the away fans’ audible enjoyment suggested a club happy in its own company. That has rarely been the case since they moved to the London Stadium in the summer of 2016.

The noisy contingent from east London even sang their manager’s name for the first time, which Pellegrini said he was “very happy” to hear. “When we started the season so bad I never felt any negative reaction,” he said, in reference to West Ham losing their first four matches. “We know last season was not easy so I think they deserve this.”

They ended the day just two points off sixth-placed Manchester United. And in Anderson the Hammers may have a new hero in the club’s classic mould; his brilliance cannot always be counted on but he is a player capable of a hot streak. Pellegrini spoke of Anderson delivering “four or five decisive performances” before then preaching characteristic caution.

“It was important for him to learn what the Premier League is,” said the Chilean. “And Felipe still needs to improve a little.” With Marko Arnautovic absent until the new year, and Andriy Yarmolenko out longer still, a considerable burden has fallen on Anderson but he appears capable of shouldering it.

Ranieri has no such luxury. The habit of his long career has been to bolt his teams’ back door but he is working with a group of players incapable of doing that.


Work ahead for Claudio Ranieri as West Ham ensure Fulham stay bottom

Sam Dean, match report at Craven Cottage

With his arms folded across his chest and a beanie hat pulled over his head, Claudio Ranieri had the look of a man who was braced for a long, hard winter. The former Leicester City manager has tried to bring some positivity to the club in his first month in south-west London, but it must be hard to maintain his sunny disposition when the goals are pouring into the Fulham net like the December rain.

Ranieri’s side shipped two more here, against a West Ham United team that is looking more coherent and clinical by the week. First-half strikes from Robert Snodgrass and Michail Antonio served to worsen the mood at Craven Cottage, where Ranieri has so far been unable to introduce the defensive solidity they will need if they are to stay in the division.

It is now one win in 12 for Fulham, who began this season with many of their fans hoping for a top-half finish. What those supporters would now give for a side as balanced and robust as their opponents were here.

West Ham have now won four consecutive Premier League matches for the first time since February 2014. There is a growing sense of belief under Manuel Pellegrini, and a newfound dash of daring in attack, where Felipe Anderson has begun to thrive on a consistent basis. “Every game he is learning a little bit more,” said Pellegrini of the Brazilian, who was once again the key man for West Ham.

The plaudits will be for Anderson, but for the West Ham fans the praise should also be poured on Pellegrini, whose name was chanted by the away end throughout the second half. “When we started the season so badly, I never felt any negative reaction,” Pellegrini said. “They were always behind us.” They are certainly behind them now, especially with the table this morning showing that West Ham are only two points away from sixth-placed Manchester United.

The first goal came after little more than a quarter of an hour, when Anderson flipped the ball over the sliding Denis Odoi before rolling an inviting pass to Snodgrass, whose curling shot ripped into the top corner.

It felt harsh on Fulham, who should have had a goal of their own when Aboubakar Kamara raced through on goal only to be denied by Lukasz Fabianski. Ranieri’s side were playing well, but the inability of their defenders continues to undermine the attacking efforts of the forwards. “They scored very, very easy,” said Ranieri. “We have to stay calm. We want to get the ball immediately and that is not right. We had a training session about this, about staying calm and reflecting, and at the right moment making a tackle.”

No side has conceded more goals after 16 matches of a Premier League season since 1999, and the second West Ham goal was proof of how much work Ranieri will need to do this winter. Anderson crossed from the left, and not one white shirt noticed Antonio at the back post. All it took was a simple flick from Javier Hernandez to set him up, and Antonio could hardly miss from eight yards out. The look of disbelief on the face of Tom Cairney, the Fulham captain, said it all.

Yet again, Fulham came up short in the moments that mattered most. None of their forwards had the class of Anderson, who at one stage seemed to be on a personal mission to individually humiliate as many white shirts as possible. “They tried to do their best,” Ranieri said of his players. At this rate, that will not be good enough.


Robert Snodgrass and Michail Antonio both on target as Hammers put Claudio Ranieri's men to the sword to continue their surge up the Premier League table

Robert Snodgrass opened the scoring with a superb curling strike after some neat work from Felipe Anderson
West Ham doubled their lead just before the half-hour with Michail Antonio finishing off a good team move
The result leaves Fulham at the foot of the table while the Hammers continue to climb with another victory

By Sami Mokbel for The Mail on Sunday

West Ham showcased a masterclass in taking your opportunities when they arrive; Fulham demonstrated exactly what happens if you don't.

Manuel Pellegrini's men only had three shots on target all night; they scored two of them - Robert Snodgrass and Michail Antonio securing the Hammers' fourth straight victory.

It was almost harsh on Fulham, who dominated possession and missed good chances of their own.

But that's life in the Premier League; unfortunately for Claudio Ranieri's rock-bottom side - they simply haven't got to grips with life in the big time.

Heading into this encounter, the optimism spurred by Ranieri's debut victory against Southampton has ebbed somewhat.

After two losses and a draw, reality has kicked in for the Italian.

No such concerns for Pellegrini; three consecutive wins has provided further evidence the Hammers are clicking under the Chilean after their worrying start.

Contrasting fortunes to say the least; not that you'd know it from the start of this London derby.

Andre Schurrle, after cutting in from the left, fired a sweetly struck shot just over the bar in the ninth minute as Fulham started brightly.

Less than a minute later, Aboubakar Kamara was sent clean through by Tom Cairney - but with just Lukasz Fabianski to beat the Fulham striker's finish was woeful, the Hammers keeper making the save.

It's Fulham's lack of conviction in defence that's cost them this season - their woeful tally of 40 goals conceded going into this clash told its own story.

But Kamara's finish was powder puff, Premier League matches are decided on such moments.

Eight minutes later, the Cottagers' profligacy came home to roost.

Denis Odoi made a mess of dealing with Mark Noble's searching pass, allowing Felipe Anderson the freedom of Craven Cottage to locate Snodgrass on the edge of the box.

There was still plenty to do mind you but Snodgrass' finish was almost nonchalant - passing his subtle left-footed effort past Sergio Rico.

'One-nil to the Cockneys,' screamed the delirious away support. Ranieri, while he may not admit it publicly, knows the story could have been different had Kamara shown an ounce of composure earlier.

Fair play to Fulham, though, they mustered a promising response - carving out three chances in as many minutes.

First, Aleksandar Mitrovic saw his diving header from Joe Bryan's cross ripple the side netting in the 26th minute before Kamara wasted another opportunity nodding Odoi's cross straight at Fabianski.

Fulham - and Kamara's - frustrations continued seconds later, the French striker's rasping shot from 20-yards palmed away by West Ham's Polish keeper.

You could hardly fault Fulham, but for the goal, they were giving West Ham as good as they got.

But in the 29th minute, they were taught another harsh lesson as Pellegrini's side extended their lead against the run of play.

How 5ft 9ins Javier Hernandez out jumped 6ft 1ins Tim Ream to flick on Anderson's cross will remain a mystery.

Likewise, why Antonio was allowed to ghost into the box unattended left Ranieri aghast.

The West Ham forward had time to control and settle himself before finishing past the onrushing Sergio Rico at the back post.

Ranieri's face was a sight, so was Antonio's as he stormed towards jubilant Hammers fans.

Ranieri replaced Ream with Cyrus Christie at half-time as the Italian reshuffled his back-four in search of some defensive stability.

And the substitute combined with Cairney down the right in the 51st minute to cause panic in the Hammers box before Issa Diop and Fabian Balbuena combined to clear.

Yet again, West Ham's burgeoning central defensive partnership was proving pivotal; the summer signings beginning to look a bargain at a combined price of £25million.

How Fulham could do with two defenders of their quality right now.

The second half was mirroring the first, Fulham dominating possession without having the instinct to make it count.

West Ham, on the other hand, looked menacing on the counter attack while Declan Rice once again showed why he's arguably the best teenager in English football right now with a mature performance way beyond his 19 years.

Cairney threatened to slice through West Ham with a powerful run in the 67th minute only to be stopped in his tracks by another Balbuena challenge before Antonio and Anderson squandered decent headed opportunities at the other end.

Andy Carroll was introduced by Pellegrini in place of Hernandez in the closing stages - but by then West Ham were in cruise control.

Things are looking up for Pellegrini; down, however, will be the operative word for Ranieri if he can't rapidly galvanise his struggling team.


Fulham (4-3-3): Rico 5; Odoi 5, Mawson 5.5, Ream 5 (Christie 46), Bryan 6; Chambers 6, Seri 6 (Johansen 61); Cairney 6.5, Kamara 5, Schurrle 6 (Kebano 77); Mitrovic 6;

Subs not used: Bettinelli, Ayite, Vietto, Cisse

Scorers: NONE

Booked: Seri, Johansen

Manager: Claudio Ranieri 6

West Ham (4-4-2): Fabianksi 7; Zabaleta 7, Diop 6.5, Balbuena 7, Masuaku 7; Snodgrass 7.5, Noble 7.5 (Obiang 62), Rice 7.5; Anderson 8; Antonio 7 (Diangana 85), Hernandez 6.5 (Carroll 73);

Subs not used: Cresswell, Adrian, Ogbonna, Xande Silva

Scorers: Snodgrass (17), Antonio (29)

Booked: Noble

Manager: Manuel Pellegrini 7

Referee: Mike Dean

Football London

Pellegrini transcript: every word on Fulham win, Snodgrass, Anderson & fans chanting for him

Here is what the Hammers manager had to say to the media after West Ham secured a fourth straight Premier League win by beating Fulham

By Sam Inkersole West Ham correspondent

Four straight wins, how pleasing?

I am very pleased, it is not easy to win four games in a row. It was a tough game against Fulham, maybe their position in the table is not the best one but on their pitch, they have good players , we knew it would be a difficult game.

It was game where we didn't create too many chances, but we scored the ones we did create. I think that we defended very well, especially in the second half when we didn't really do too much.

Are you surprised at how easy it was in the second half?

Maybe we knew that they had to take more risk because they were losing 2-0 and that we were going to have more space to work in but really, the game was different from what I expected as they created chances and we really didn't that much. But we kept a clean sheet, that is important, scored two goals and continue moving up the table.


Andreas Pereira being tracked by West Ham as Irons ponder January loan move for Man Utd star

The midfielder has shunned United's offer of a three-year extension despite featuring six times this term

By Neil Moxley

West Ham are looking to take Manchester United midfielder Andreas Pereira on loan in January.

The 22-year-old Belgian-born Brazilian international has featured under Jose Mourinho this season, but he has shunned the club’s offer of a new three-year deal.

Pereira’s current deal expires at the end of the season, but United do have an option – which they are set to take, and will then be in a position to sanction a loan deal.

Arsenal and Chelsea are hugely keen on the player – but he is looking for regular first-team football at this stage of his career and Manuel Pellegrini is looking to lure him to the London Stadium.

Pereira has played six times in all competitions so far this season ahead of United's trip to Anfield on Sunday.

He started the Red Devils' Premier League clashes at Brighton and against Leicester, as well as the midweek Champions League defeat at Valencia.

Mark Noble, was he injured?

No, it was because of his yellow card, I think it was a risk for him to continue when Fulham was trying to play more attacking. At that moment I thought it was right to change him for Obiang and I think Pedro did really well.

The fans were singing your name for the first time tonight, is that significant for you?

Yes of course. I think that when we started the season so bad, we were not winning games, I never felt any reaction negatively towards me. They were always behind me, behind my work, behind my players.

Last season was not easy for them, so they deserve to enjoy these games and win in the way we are.

How does that make you feel personally?

Very happy also.

We are just near the middle of the season ad then maybe at the end of the season we c an sing together but for now, we must keep our feet on the ground, we are playing well, I know that West Ham fans enjoy the style we play so we must continue the same way.

Is sixth a realistic target for West Ham this season?

Maybe. We started with no points, it was very unexpected now just to be two points behind the European spots now but we are always talking to the players that we must go game by game. Manchester United play tomorrow but always we are talking about what is happening at the top half of the table, not at the bottom half of the table.

Our target for this season, we know that the first five teams have a lot of points but we will try to continue winning and at the end of the season, we will see.

Is it difficult to look to the transfer window considering the rejuvenated players like Snodgrass in your squad?

Well I think that, this team, we are playing with eight players injured. Now we will see in January what will happen, we need to decide but for the moment I am very happy with the squad.

We have four or five long term injuries to players who I don't think will play this season.

Was it just a case of waiting for Anderson's talent to shine?

For Felipe it was important for him to know the Premier League and in every game he is learning a bit more. He must continue improving because he is a top player, in the last four games he has been decisive and I hope that he will continue.


Pellegrini gets big injury booster

West Ham talisman Marko Arnautovic could be set for a faster than expected return to action and may even be on the bench for the game against Southampton on December 27.

And there is confidence that even if he fails to make that game he will be back for the match at Burnley on the 30th.

It’s a big boost for the manager Maniel Pellegrini who was expected to be without the striker until the game against Brighton and Hove Albion at the London Stadium on January 2.

We are told that the player is making great progress in shaking off a hamstring injury and a senior Hammers source confirmed to CandH by e mail that the earlier than expected return could very well be on.

He said; ” As we stand things are looking very good for him and he should be back for Burnley or Southampton which would be great news in any circumstances but especially over such a busy period when we have so many injuries.”

This is Futbol

West Ham scouts on EL mission

West Ham deployed a scout to watch Olympiakos beat AC Milan 3-1 in the Europa League on Thursday, according to Scouts in Attendance.

The reliable scouting experts reported on their Twitter account that the Hammers had been in attendance as the Greek Super League side overcame the Serie A giants in Athens.

It is said that director of football Mario Husillos has been watching left-back Leonardo Koutris, while Mady Camara and Pape Cisse are other players suggested to be of interest.

Good move for West Ham?


The Irons’ issues at left-back are well known, with Arthur Masuaku and Aaron Cresswell both struggling for form so far this season under Manuel Pellegrini.

Masuaku has been the preferred choice, while Cresswell has shown glimpses of his quality but has been dogged down by injury issues of late.

Koutris is a 23-year-old Greece international flyer who has shown he has what it takes to compete at a higher level, and a January swoop would make sense.

This is Futbol rating: 7.5/10

Likely to happen?

It is likely that Pellegrini will make some movements in the January transfer window, and left-back is certainly a position which needs strengthening.

The Hammers will however have their eye on several targets, with a move for Koutris potentially on the cards depending on what happens between now and the opening of the window.

This is Futbol rating: 2/10

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

eastend joker 9:01 Sun Dec 16
Re: Sunday newspapers (includes West Ham)
thanks Alan

charleyfarley 1:28 Sun Dec 16
Re: Sunday newspapers (includes West Ham)
cheers Al

Thanks Alan 1:06 Sun Dec 16
Re: Sunday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

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