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Alan 1:24 Sat Jan 26
Saturday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Tottenham are finally ready to step into the transfer market with a £20m move for Paris St-Germain's French midfielder Adrien Rabiot, 23. (Sun)

Southampton striker Charlie Austin will leave the club this month with Wolverhampton Wanderers and Aston Villa interested in the 29-year-old Englishman. (Telegraph)

Everton have rejected an approach from Crystal Palace to take Turkey striker Cenk Tosun, 27, on loan. (Liverpool Echo)

Meanwhile, Toffees manager Marco Silva has told Yannick Bolasie there is little prospect of him playing this season. Palace are considering a move for their former winger, 29. (Guardian)

Real Betis are set to sign Brazil's Emerson, 20, ending Liverpool and Arsenal's hopes of sealing the services of the in-demand right-back. (Marca)

Leicester are interested in signing Monaco's 21-year-old Belgian midfielder Youri Tielemans for over £20m. (90min.com)

Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson has rubbished reports linking the club's Ivory Coast international winger Wilfried Zaha, 26, with Borussia Dortmund. (Goal.com)

Arsenal remain hopeful of securing a deal for Barcelona midfielder Denis Suarez but talks have stalled over the 25-year-old Spaniard. (Evening Standard)

Arsenal and West Ham are interested in Villarreal's Spanish midfielder Pablo Fornals, 22. (Sport, via Talksport)

Liverpool target Timo Werner, 22, could have his wages at current club RB Leipzig doubled in a bid to fend off the Reds' interest in the Germany forward. (Liverpool Echo)

Meanwhile, Mexican side Club America are interested in Liverpool's Serbia winger Lazar Markovic, 24. (ESPN, in Spanish)

New AC Milan signing Krzysztof Piatek asked to wear the famous number nine shirt - but the 23-year-old Pole's request has been rejected by the club who say he will have to earn the honour. (Sun)

Zenit St Petersburg's Argentine midfielder Leandro Paredes, 24, has agreed terms on a £35m transfer to Paris St-Germain. (RMC Sport)

Crystal Palace are set to re-sign winger Bakary Sako from West Brom. The Mali international, 30, left Selhurst Park during the summer. (Guardian)

West Brom are poised to sign Newcastle midfielder Jacob Murphy, 23, after their FA Cup tie at Brighton. (Telegraph)

AC Milan are still hopeful of signing Dalian Yifang winger Yannick Carrasco. The former Atletico Madrid player and Belgium international, 25, is keen on a move to the Serie A club. (Calciomercato, in Italian)

Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl remains keen to cut the number of players in his squad during the January transfer window. (Daily Echo)

Leeds are targeting Wolves' Portuguese striker Ivan Cavaleiro, 25, before the transfer window shuts. (Sun)


Marko Arnautovic confirms he is staying at West Ham

• ‘It is clear that London and West Ham feels like home’
• Club remain in talks with Celta Vigo’s Maxi Gómez

Jacob Steinberg

Marko Arnautovic has performed a dramatic U-turn and pledged his future to West Ham.

The previously want-away forward released a statement on Instagram underlining his commitment to the club, after weeks of speculation over his future and a potential move to Guangzhou Evergrande in China.

Indeed the club were prepared to let the 29-year-old leave for £45m and have targeted Celta Vigo’s Maxi Gómez as a replacement.

The manager, Manuel Pellegrini, had concluded that Arnautovic’s desire to move to China had left him unable to rely on the 29-year-old. He dropped the Austrian for last week’s defeat by Bournemouth and has left him out again for Saturday evening’s FA Cup tie at AFC Wimbledon.

However, late on Friday night Arnautovic took to Instagram to clear up the confusion. “Dear West Ham fans, I guess it is no secret that there has been an offer for me and I have to admit the offer was a very tempting one for me and my family,” he wrote.

“I am a professional footballer and the only thing I know in life is to play football. It is clear that London and West Ham feels like home and I hope the West Ham fans have always seen that. The club has pointed my career in the right direction since I joined and therefore I want to put the offers aside, help the club to climb as high as possible in the table and try to win the Cup.

“Let’s focus on the rest of this season together and let them bubbles fly.”

Pellegrini had not been convinced by Arnautovic’s efforts in training this week and is understood to have given the club’s board the green light to sell the striker if their valuation was met. West Ham are open to letting Arnautovic leave in the summer and remain in talks with Celta over Gómez, whose contract contains a £43.5m release clause. The Spanish club, however, are battling relegation from La Liga and want to keep the 22-year-old. Intriguingly, one possibility could be a deal being done in this window before loaning him back until the end of the season.

West Ham have been unimpressed with Arnautovic’s behaviour since receiving Guangzhou’s original offer of €35m this month. They have not welcomed the interest in one of their most important players and rejected the Chinese Super League club’s second offer of €40m last week. The deal would have seen Arnautovic receive £40m over a four-year contract, a large upgrade on his West Ham wage of £90,000 a week. Shanghai SIPG, the CSL champions, have also shown an interest.

Pellegrini will have to reintegrate Arnautovic into the squad now, with few forward options available. Andy Carroll is out of contract at the end of the season, Javier Hernández wants to join Valencia and Lucas Pérez has fallen out of favour. Arnautovic should return to the side to face Wolves on Tuesday.


Arsenal and West Ham reportedly chasing Villarreal midfielder Pablo Fornals

The Spain international has been a shining light in Villarreal’s poor season

By Jake Bacon

Arsenal and West Ham are reportedly chasing Villarreal midfielder Pablo Fornals.

The Spain international is believed to have a £28.5million buy-out clause.
Fornals has been a shining light in Villarreal’s poor season, appearing 29 times. The club are second from bottom and three points from safety.

Spanish publication Sport claim the 22-year-old is “on the agenda” of Arsenal and West Ham.

Speaking about his player’s future earlier this month, Villarreal boss Luis Garcia said: “I live a normal life with Fornals.

“He’s training perfectly, as if nothing’s going on. Until something reaches me, I have no idea and the club have already said that there’s nothing at the moment.

“We’re working with complete normality and I see Pablo focused and involved.”

Fornals, who has previously been linked with Premier League strugglers Fulham, has been capped twice by Spain.


Five things to look out for when West Ham face AFC Wimbledon!

1. Saturday Night Football

West Ham United’s Emirates FA Cup third-round tie at AFC Wimbledon will kick-off at the unusual time of 7.45pm on Saturday.

Esteemed Hammers historians could find no record of the club contesting a competitive first-team fixture on a Saturday evening previously.

However, when tonight’s game starts, West Ham will have played matches with no fewer than eleven different kick-off times this season – 7.45pm on a Tuesday, 7.45pm on a Wednesday, 7.45pm on a Thursday, 8pm on a Friday, 12.30pm, 3pm, 5.30pm and now 7.45pm on a Saturday and 1.30pm, 2.15pm, 4pm on a Sunday!

2. Wally Downes

West Ham United supporters will recognise the figure barking out orders from the AFC Wimbledon technical area on Saturday evening.

Wally Downes spent two years on the Hammers’ coaching staff between December 2010 and December 2012, working initially under Avram Grant and later Sam Allardyce.

Now 57, Downes played for Wimbledon between 1979 and 1988, inspiring the famed Crazy Gang team spirit which helped the Dons climb from the old Fourth Division to the First inside a decade.

After working in India with Steve Coppell, who he had previously coached under at Reading, Downes was appointed AFC Wimbledon manager on 4 December 2018.

3. History in the making

In the 16 previous seasons since the club was formed in 2002, AFC Wimbledon had never reached the fourth round proper of the FA Cup – until now.

In three of the last four campaigns, the Dons have won through to the third round, only to be denied a place in the last 32 by Premier League Liverpool, non-league Sutton United and Premier League Tottenham Hotspur respectively.

So, whatever happens in Saturday’s tie, it will be an historic occasion for everyone associated with the host club.

4. An aerial bombardment

When West Ham United faced AFC Wimbledon in the Carabao Cup third round back in September, the hosts opted for a towering strikeforce consisting of 6’2 Joe Pigott and 6’4 James Hanson.

The Dons’ direct approach reaped immediate rewards when Pigott headed the hosts ahead inside two minutes.

However, when Rod McDonald was sent-off on 18 minutes, Pigott was withdrawn soon after and Wimbledon’s aerial threat subsided as West Ham dominated both territory and possession.

AFC now have a different manager, with Wally Downes since replacing Neal Ardley, but the approach may be the same come Saturday evening, especially since the home side have since added 6’4 Luton Town loanee Jake Jervis to their squad.

5. Another emphatic West Ham win

If you ask AFC Wimbledon supporters, they will tell you their club is the ‘real’ Wimbledon, as opposed to the one which morphed into MK Dons following the controversial move to Milton Keynes in 2004.

By then, a group of committed fans had founded AFC Wimbledon in 2002 and started the journey which now sees them sit a division above their ‘rivals’.

West Ham were drawn to face the Wimbledon which won the FA Cup in 1988 just once previously in the world’s most-famous knockout competition.

John Lyall’s Hammers travelled to a muddy Plough Lane to face Dave Bassett’s Dons, then a Second Division club, in March 1985 for a fifth-round tie which ended in a 1-1 draw, with Tony Cottee opener (pictured) being cancelled out by Stewart Evans’ equaliser.

Cottee’s hat-trick and goals from Paul Allen and Alan Dickens settled the Boleyn Ground replay decisively in the Irons’ favour, with a 5-1 win sending the top-flight east Londoners through to the last eight.

A repeat of that scoreline would be most welcome 34 years on.

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

geoffpikey 6:16 Sun Jan 27
Re: Saturday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan. Feel free to rest on this Sabbath.

Mex Martillo 1:46 Sat Jan 26
Re: Saturday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan 1:25 Sat Jan 26

Cicero 1:41 Sat Jan 26
Re: Saturday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks, Alan.

Thanks Alan 1:25 Sat Jan 26
Re: Saturday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

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