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Alan 1:56 Thu Nov 7
Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Former Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is set to be offered the Bayern Munich manager's job until the end of the season. (Sun)

Bayer Leverkusen and Germany midfielder Kai Havertz is open to a move away from the Bundesliga. The 20-year-old is a target for Manchester United. (Marca, via Metro)

Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says there "might be two" signings in January, but the club will do most of their business in the summer. (Evening Standard)

Chelsea could listen to bids for France striker Olivier Giroud, 33, and Spanish 32-year-old winger Pedro, while Spanish left-back Marcos Alonso, 28, is facing a fight over his long-term future at Stamford Bridge. (Telegraph)

Fenerbahce want to sign Pedro on a free transfer next summer. (Takvim, via Mail)

Pedro may look for a move in January with China also an option for the Spaniard. (El Dorsal - in Spanish)

The future of West Ham director of football Mario Husillos is in doubt following the team's recent poor form. (Guardian)

Former Brighton boss Chris Hughton is not interested in taking over at managerless Stoke City as he hopes for a return to the Premier League. (Sun)

Manchester United's Serbia midfielder Nemanja Matic, 31, is open to leaving in January. (Manchester Evening News)

Former Red Bull Salzburg and RB Leipzig sporting director Ralf Rangnick has had talks with a Manchester United official about a role at the club. (Athletic, via Mirror)

Chelsea will not necessarily make signings in January even if their transfer ban is overturned, says manager Frank Lampard. (Talksport)

Red Bull Salzburg and Norway striker Erling Haaland, 19, is keen on moving to the Premier League during his career, says father Alf-Inge Haaland. (Talksport)

Inter Milan and AC Milan are in talks over a new £630m stadium nine miles away from the San Siro. (Mail)

Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde still has the support of the club's board but there is increasing concern about how the team is playing. (ESPN)

Sheffield United goalkeeper Dean Henderson, 22, says he nearly joined Leeds United before signing for the Blades again on loan from Manchester United. (Yorkshire Post)

More than 90% of Manchester United fans are not satisfied with the way the club is being run, according to a survey. (Telegraph)

Leeds United owner Andrea Radrizzani has travelled to Paris for further talks about Qatar Sports Investment investing in the Elland Road club. (Times - subscription required)

The Premier League has introduced an app for players which is designed to help with their mental and physical wellbeing. (Mail)

Guardian Rumour Mill

Barry Glendenning

Not content with all the praise being lavished on his exciting Leicester side as they chase a top-four finish, Brendan Rodgers is hoping to earn even more by bringing in several January recruits. Emmanuel Dennis is a 21-year-old striker currently plying his trade at Belgian outfit Club Brugge and made headlines by scoring a brace against Real Madrid at the Bernabéu just over a month ago. Rodgers is an admirer and hopes to bring him to the Premier League. Real Sociedad central defender Diego Llorente is also inching his way across the Leicester radar, while Tottenham and West Ham are also in the race to secure the £45m-rated 26-year-old’s scrawl.

Wolfsburg striker Wout Weghorst is wanted by Crystal Palace, who are finding goals hard to come by despite their position in the top half of the table. Averaging less than a goal per game, Jordan Ayew is currently their top scorer with three, while Christian Benteke has scored just twice for his club since April 2018.

With the future of Granit Xhaka at Arsenal in doubt following all that recent unpleasantness, AC Milan could offer the Swiss international a fresh start, if reports from Italy are to be believed. Stripped of the captaincy by Unai Emery, Xhaka has stopped short of apologising for his angry reaction to being jeered, scapegoated and bullied by the entitled masses at the Emirates while being subbed off during his most recent appearance for the club.

Increasingly surplus to requirements at Chelsea due to the emergence of various prominent members of Lampard Youth, the days of old-timers Pedro, Marcos Alonso and Olivier Giroud at Stamford Bridge are looking numbered. Turkish side Fenerbahçe are interested in taking Pedro, who has also attracted interest from the Chinese Super League. Giroud, who has made no secret of his displeasure at the lack of first team action he’s been given this season, is understood to have admirers at Crystal Palace and West Ham, but could also make a triumphant return to France. Following his half-time withdrawal against Ajax, who targeted him with great success on Tuesday night, Alonso could also find himself looking for new employers, not least because Emerson has finally returned from the treatment room after six weeks out.

Manchester United are keeping tabs on Burnley midfielder Dwight McNeil, who they had on their books as a kid only to let him go when he was 14. Having watched the midfielder develop into one of the Premier League’s most exciting homegrown talents under Sean Dyche, they will have to pay the thick end of £40m to bring him back to Old Trafford.

And finally, the delightful prospect of seeing Arséne Wenger gadding about in Lederhosen and a Tyrolean hat while supping frothy lager from a stein seems increasingly less preposterous, following reports that Bayern Munich are ready to offer the 70-year-old their vacant manager’s job until the end of the season.

With Niko Kovac having been unceremoniously ushered through the door marked “Ausfahrt”, the Sun says the German champions have made an approach to Wenger, although The Athletic’s Raphael Honigstein claims the former Arsenal manager is not on the club’s shortlist of potential replacements. Wenger, for his part, says he would very much like to be considered.


West Ham director of football Mario Husillos’s future in doubt amid slump
• Club unhappy with Argentinian’s summer transfer work
• Husillos is a close ally of manager Manuel Pellegrini

Jacob Steinberg

West Ham’s alarm at their recent slump has raised doubts over the future of Mario Husillos, the club’s director of football and one of Manuel Pellegrini’s closest allies.

Pellegrini is in no danger of being sacked, with West Ham determined to back their manager despite sliding into 13th after picking up two points from their past five games, but questions are being asked about Husillos’s role. There is unhappiness with the Argentinian’s work in the transfer market last summer and he faces a fight to retain ultimate responsibility for identifying signings in January. After that, the club may look to review Husillos’s position.

West Ham, who performed shambolically during the 3-2 home defeat by Newcastle last Saturday, broke their transfer record when they signed Sébastien Haller from Eintracht Frankfurt and they expect the £45m striker to come good despite struggling in front of goal recently. Yet eyebrows have been raised at two of Husillos’s picks. Pablo Fornals, a £24m signing from Villarreal, is yet to make an impact and the Spanish goalkeeper Roberto Jiménez has failed to impress while deputising for Lukasz Fabianski, who could be out until the new year with a hip injury.

Fornals is adjusting to the pace of English football but it is debatable whether West Ham, who visit Burnley on Saturday, needed to sign the 23-year-old Spaniard. Pellegrini wanted a commanding central midfielder at the start of the summer and West Ham pushed hard to sign André Gomes from Barcelona. Gomes joined Everton instead.

The messaging changed after West Ham missed out on the Portugal midfielder. They switched the emphasis to attack and pushed through the signing of Fornals, a creative midfielder, even though they had Felipe Anderson, Manuel Lanzini, Robert Snodgrass and Andriy Yarmolenko in those positions.

Fornals has started four league games and a lack of robustness in central midfield has remained an issue. West Ham did not replace Pedro Obiang or Edimilson Fernandes after selling them to Sassuolo and Mainz respectively and there is little depth behind Declan Rice and Mark Noble. Carlos Sánchez, the 33-year-old Colombian midfielder, has no future at the club and Jack Wilshere, who has 18 months left on a contract worth close to £100,000 a week, is rarely fit.

It has not helped that Fabianski has been out since going off injured against Bournemouth on 28 September. Fabianski’s previous No 2, Adrián, joined Liverpool on a free last summer and Roberto has been a disaster.

The 33-year-old did not play a league game for Espanyol last season but he played 34 times when Málaga were relegated from La Liga in 2018. Husillos left Málaga at the end of that season and joined West Ham on Pellegrini’s recommendation. The London Stadium club’s board had wanted to make Eduardo Macià their director of football but went with their new manager’s choice instead.

Husillos has struggled to convince West Ham of his worth and the signing of Roberto has heightened doubts over his judgment. There were misgivings about Roberto when West Ham lost 4-0 to Oxford United in the Carabao Cup in September and he has performed poorly since stepping in for Fabianski, making costly errors in defeats by Everton and Newcastle.

The slump has hit West Ham’s hopes of breaking into the top six but they have faith in Pellegrini, whose £7m-a-year contract runs out in the summer of 2021. At the same time there are concerns over the former Manchester City manager’s tactics and team selections. Pablo Zabaleta, the 34-year-old right-back, was repeatedly exposed against Newcastle and there is irritation at the failure to get the best out of Haller, who has scored once in his past eight games.

West Ham have a tough run after the international break, with home games against Arsenal and Tottenham and trips to Chelsea and Wolves set to test their faith in Pellegrini. They will make decisions next month on whether they need to spend in January.

Uncertainty over Conor Coventry’s future poses another problem for West Ham. The 19-year-old midfielder’s contract runs out at the end of the season and he is unhappy with the terms on offer. The Republic of Ireland Under-21 international is attracting interest from several clubs and could leave in January.


Report: Newcastle and West Ham interested in signing Genk striker Mbwana Samatta

By Will Butcher

BBC Sport have claimed that both Newcastle United and West Ham United are interested in signing Genk striker Mbwana Samatta, who is reported to have a release clause of just £10million.

(Photo by Alex Pantling/Getty Images)

Samatta, 26, has risen to prominence over the last few weeks with his performances in the Champions League. The talismanic striker has scored twice in four Champions League outings for Genk, while also wearing the captain’s armband on two occasions. He scored a header against Liverpool on Tuesday night.

A powerful striker, Samatta has scored a huge 74 goals in 181 games for Belgian side Genk – but is arguably in the form of his career at the moment. The Genk number 10 has netted eight goals in just 18 games.

A 51-time internatinal for Tanzania, Samatta is excellent in the air but also boasts plenty of speed and strength – and is obviously more than adept at finding the back of the net. Samatta has a contract at Genk until the summer of 2021.

TBR’s view – £10m is a bargain for either Newcastle or West Ham

Both The Toon and The Hammers could do with additions up front. Both sides spent big on a new striker in the summer, with Newcastle signing Brazilian Joelinton and West Ham landing French target man Sebastien Haller.

Newcastle also brought in Andy Carroll as cover, while Albian Ajeti joined West Ham. But Joelinton is struggling to impress in the Premier League, while Ajeti has hardly been given a chance in the Premier League.

Both clubs could do with signing Samatta – but perhaps a move to Newcastle would see him have more of a chance of reaching the starting eleven.


Pellegrini wants £30m Aissa Mandi at West Ham in January

Danny Owen

Aissa Mandi's impressive La Liga displays for Real Betis could reportedly earn him a move to the Premier League with struggling West Ham United.

The 27-year-old is enjoying a strong campaign but won’t come cheap (Picture: Getty)

West Ham United manager Manuel Pellegrini wants to reinforce his struggling backline with the signing of £30 million Real Betis stopper Aissa Mandi, according to Le Buteur.

After a bright start to the season which had some suggesting that a European challenge was on the cards, the Hammers have slid down the table after failing to win any of their last five Premier League games.

A 3-2 home defeat to a previously goal-shy Newcastle side was particularly concerning as the hosts were opened up again and again on the counter attack, while conceding three times from set pieces.

So 51-time Algerian international Mandi could stroll into West Ham’s starting XI if he swaps La Liga for the London Stadium in the winter. A 28-year-old centre-half who can also fill in at right-back or left-back, the former Reims ace joined Betis in 2016 and he has been one of their most impressive performers during a difficult start to the new season.

The report adds that Mandi has a release clause worth around £30 million in his contract, meaning that Los Verdiblancos will be powerless to prevent him walking away from the Estadio Benito Villamarin should West Ham decide that he is worth the money.

This is not the first time Pellegrini's side have tried to bring Mandi to the capital either. ABC Sevilla claims that they had a £13 million bid rejected in the summer of 2018 before signing Toulouse captain Issa Diop instead.

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

Mex Martillo 7:39 Fri Nov 8
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

FruityBoots. 6:45 Thu Nov 7
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan, looks like Jacob Steinberg was tuned in to the @ExWHUemployee podcast last night!

Side of Ham 4:39 Thu Nov 7
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Cheers Alan.

......What's Samatta you?.........HEY!

Texas Iron 3:34 Thu Nov 7
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
How's about a Good DFM...???

ted fenton 2:26 Thu Nov 7
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
The Stoat 2:08 Thu Nov 7

Alan 2:25 Thu Nov 7
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Aissa Mandi story added.

The Stoat 2:08 Thu Nov 7
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

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