WHO Poll
Q: 2020/2021 Where will we finish up this season?
a. Top Four, Champions League here we come
b. 5th-7th Europa League is well within our grasp
c. 8th to 14th anywhere in mid table is about right
d. We're in a dog fight before a ball has been kicked and we'll do well to finish 17th or just above
e. GSB have derailed our season before a ball has been kicked, the Championship beckons

Alan 1:55 Tue Jan 7
Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Tottenham are considering a loan approach for Atletico Madrid's France midfielder Thomas Lemar, 24, with a 60m euros (£51m) option-to-buy. (Independent)

Tottenham and England midfielder Harry Winks, 23, is a possible target for Manchester City and Manchester United. (Athletic, via Mirror)

Chelsea and Manchester United have contacted 32-year-old Paris St-Germain and Uruguay striker Edinson Cavani, who is believed to be close to joining to Atletico Madrid, about a January move. (L'Equipe, via Sun)

Manchester City are targeting Inter Milan's Slovakia defender Milan Skriniar, 24, who has also been monitored by Barcelona and Real Madrid. (Mirror)

Inter Milan have made a £20m bid for Tottenham and Denmark midfielder Christian Eriksen, 27, but manager Antonio Conte would prefer to sign Barcelona midfielder Arturo Vidal, 32. (Mirror)

However, Inter chief executive Giuseppe Marotta says the Serie A giants have had no contact with Eriksen about a January transfer. (Football.London)

Inter are also leading Aston Villa and Newcastle United in the race to sign France striker Olivier Giroud, 33, from Chelsea. (Telegraph)

Arsenal and Gabon striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, 30, has been linked with leaving the Gunners but says he is "committed" to the club. (Mail)

Manchester United are interested in Leicester City's England midfielder James Maddison, 23, but are aware that it is difficult to conclude big transfers in January. (Sky Sports)

Everton have joined the race to sign St Etienne's French defender Wesley Fofana, 19, who is wanted by a host of clubs across Europe. (Star)

Real Madrid's Croatia midfielder Luka Modric, 34, has held talks with MLS side DC United, Wayne Rooney's former club. (The Athletic - subscription required)

Newcastle manager Steve Bruce said the club has no intention of selling its best young players after being asked about Manchester United's interest in Sean Longstaff, 22. (Manchester Evening News)

The Magpies and Aston Villa are considering signing out-of-favour Brighton striker Glenn Murray, 36, until the end of the season. (Guardian)

Newcastle are interested in Sampdoria's Gambia international defender Omar Colley, 27. (Tuttomercato via Chronicle Live)

West Ham are keen to bring in Benfica's Portugal midfielder Gedson Fernandes, 20, who has a £102m release clause in his current deal. (Football.London)

Everton are also keen on Fernandes and will make Senegal striker Oumar Niasse, 29, Curacao full-back Cuco Martina, 30 and Turkey striker Cenk Tosun, 28, available to raise funds. (Express)

The Hammers have agreed a £4m deal to sign Middlesbrough keeper Darren Randolph, who left West Ham to join the Championship club in 2017. (Guardian)

Brighton, Crystal Palace and Norwich are interested in signing Tanzania striker Mbwana Samatta, 27, from Belgian side Genk. (Guardian)

Liverpool have bid for 23-year-old Turkey and Trabzonspor goalkeeper Ugurcan Cakir. (Metro)

The Reds are set to give a new contract to 22-year-old Spanish midfielder Pedro Chirivella. (Sky Sports)

Burnley are considering a move for Scotland and Aberdeen centre-back Scott McKenna, 23. (Mail)

Juventus will not sell midfielders Emre Can, 25, or Adrien Rabiot, 24, in January, says director Fabio Paratici, despite interest from Manchester United and Everton. (Mail)

Guardian Rumour Mill

Tom Davies

José Mourinho’s public demeanour regarding the new transfer window has been about managing expectations and generally not promising the moon on a stick, but that hasn’t prevented a whirl of speculation about Tottenham incomings and outgoings. First up is 2017-18’s Thomas Lemar. Out of favour at Atlético Madrid, the French midfielder could be heading to north London on a six-month loan deal with a £51m option to buy in the summer. The loan fee would be just over £5m, reports The Independent, and Lemar is keen on a move to the Premier League.

As for the Spurs exit door, by which Christian Eriksen has been seemingly hovering for months, the Denmark midfielder’s latest suitors are Internazionale, who are waving £20m in Tottenham’s direction, though Antonio Conte might prefer Barcelona’s Arturo Vidal, reckons the Mirror. Harry Winks meanwhile might be subject of an intra-Mancunian tussle, with both Pep Guardiola and Ole Gunnar Solskjær hinting at interest in the England international.

Solskjær is also still nagging away at Leicester over the possibility of prising James Maddison away from the Premier League’s second-placed team. The Foxes manager, Brendan Rodgers, maintains he is having none of it though.

As Atlético Madrid close in on a deal for Edinson Cavani, Chelsea and Manchester United have entered stage left like pantomime villains in a bid to hijack the move, reports L’Equipe. Chelsea want competition up front to keep Tammy Abraham on his toes, while United want to add attacking flair to that offered by Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and Mason Greenwood.

Newcastle, West Ham and Southampton have all had their defensive horror shows at various points this season, and each have alighted on the Sampdoria centre-back Omar Colley as a possible solution. The 27-year-old Gambia international has impressed in Serie A this season despite Sampdoria’s struggles at the wrong end of the table, and could be available for a mere £15m.

West Ham are also keen on Benfica’s Portugal midfielder Gedson Fernandes, though his current deal has a release clause worth a cool £102m. More modestly, David Moyes also has a mind to recall Grady Diangana from his loan at West Brom, which might please Leeds and other Championship promotion hopefuls. Everton are also keen on Fernandes, however, and Carlo Ancelotti could hoof out Oumar Niasse, Cuco Martina, 30 and Cenk Tosun to generate the necessary readies.

It’s getting testy at the top in Scotland, with Rangers mounting their strongest challenge to Celtic in a decade. Same goes for the transfer market too, with the Hoops’ interest in the Stoke forward Tyrese Campbell being matched by Rangers, according to the Daily Record. The 20-year-old forward, who has scored three goals in his past three Championship matches, is also on the radar of Crystal Palace and Wolves.


Report claims West Ham made offer for Marseille star Morgan Sanson

By Tom Procter

West Ham United reportedly made an offer for Morgan Sanson ‘several weeks ago’.

(Photo by Jean Catuffe/Getty Images)

According to Le10 Sport, the Hammers have been making moves over the French star, but Marseille are not overly keen to sell.

Sanson has been in good form in recent weeks, helping the club reach second in the Ligue 1 table.

So far this term he has three goals and three assists in 19 appearances, and has been a mainstay in the starting XI.

Le10 Sport do not reveal what West Ham’s offer was, but do state that it was rejected.

They go on to say that a revised offer of over €35 million/£30 million could be ‘a gamechanger’ for the club in their pursuit of the 25-year-old.

Apparently, Newcastle United, Wolverhampton Wanderers and Crystal Palace are all monitoring.
TBR’s view – Sanson a good West Ham addition

It’s probably unlikely that Marseille would sell mid-season, especially given their league position and hopes of chasing down league leaders PSG.

And over £30 million would be a lot of money to pay, although the asking price seems fair given he has a contract until the summer 2022.

If West Ham were somehow able to pull off a deal for Sanson though, they’d have a fine player on their hands.

The playmaker is known for his passing and vision, and would theoretically be a long-term replacement for Mark Noble alongside Declan Rice in midfield.

West Ham join race for Sampdoria’s £15million-rated defender Omar Colley

By Dom Toner

West Ham have reportedly entered the race for defender Omar Colley from Serie A club Sampdoria.

TuttoMercatoWeb previously reported in January that Newcastle United were keen on the 27-year-old enforcer and were planning for imminent talks, with a summer move deemed more likely than one this month.

Goal now reports that West Ham and Southampton have joined the pursuit alongside Newcastle for the centre-back.

It is understood that The Gambia international is open to the idea of moving to England in the future and that he could cost around £15milliom.

The report explains that West Ham may need to move players on first to make room at the London Stadium.

TBR’s View:

Sampdoria do currently sit 16th in the Italian top-flight, but Colley is one of their star players and has impressed during one-and-a-half years with them.

He’s a no-nonsense centre-back with great athleticism and pace, as well as the strength that could make him a decent fit in English football.

His £15million price tag looks a tempting one considering he’s entering the peak years of his career, but West Ham boss David Moyes needs to work out his preferred centre-back combination.

Issa Diop, Angelo Ogbonna and Fabian Balbuena are the three main options in the heart of defence right now at the London Stadium.


West Ham United U23s 2-0 Manchester United U23s

Lead Coach Dmitri Halajko praised the collective endeavour of his players as West Ham United U23s opened up a four-point advantage at the top of Premier League 2 Division 2.

The Hammers were up against strong opposition in Manchester United U23s in Dagenham tonight, and produced a clinical, controlled and industrious display in the top-of-the-table clash.

The home team seemed to cover every blade of grass in a hard-fought, competitive fixture, refusing to give the visitors time or space on the ball throughout much of the game.

West Ham put themselves on course for an important victory when Alfie Lewis kept his cool to steer home a loose ball inside the area with a quarter of the game played, before Nathan Holland rocketed a strike home on the breakaway ten minutes later.

The game had a late twist when goalkeeper Joseph Anang picked up two late yellow cards, forcing Krisztian Hegyi to emerge from the bench, but the U23s’ performed professionally to see the result out.

“I think we played well and were the better team. We deserved the victory,” Halajko said afterwards. “I’m really pleased with how we played out of possession to keep a clean sheet and pressed and didn’t get played through easily.”

“2-0 up and, in the second half we had a couple more chances which could’ve killed it off, but then, right at the end, we had to hang on having gone down to ten men with ten minutes left.

“Last time we played these we were in a similar situation [a 2-2 draw in August] and we didn’t manage to hang on, so it was nice to put that to bed tonight and show that we’re capable of hanging on when we need to.

“I think the whole team can take credit for that clean sheet because we defended really well from the front, pressed and nicked it up the pitch, and, at other times, we had to really defend our penalty box. There were also moments of brilliance – like Krisztian’s save at the end – which secured that clean sheet.”

The match was the junior Hammers’ first competitive game in three weeks, following their 4-0 win over Newcastle U23s in mid-December, and Halajko expressed his delight with the work his team have put in over the festive period to remain sharp in that time.

“They’ve worked hard in the break,” he said. “They’ve probably each had three or four days off over Christmas, but apart from that they’ve been training really hard.

“We had a [behind-closed-doors] friendly match as well, so although they haven’t had a break from fixtures, they certainly haven’t had a break in general. They’ve been working really, really hard every single day.”

The game also saw the return to action of 21-year-old defender Olatunji Akinola, whose last competitive appearance came almost a year ago to the day – away at Manchester City in Premier League 2 on 5 January 2019.

The centre-back has proven his resilience during a lengthy comeback period, starting and impressing in defence on Monday night, and Halajko believes these qualities were reflected by his performance.

“He sets great standards and great examples. He’s a leader,” Halajko declared. “Then, tonight, he added a great performance to everything else that he brings.

“It shows what he’s all about that he’s been out injured for that long, and to come back in and play like that, just shows what a good professional, and what an impressive young man, he is.”

Sport Witness

West Ham in ‘pole position’ for signing – Possible €32m deal – Aston Villa also in picture

Around a year ago, Krzysztof Piatek was the darling of AC Milan.

Moving from Genoa, the striker hit the ground running and scored five goals in his first four matches for the club. His figures for the season, across both clubs, stood at 30 goals in 42 matches.

Now he’s being edged out of the picture and could be a January signing for West Ham or Aston Villa.

This season Piatek has four goals in 18 appearances. Whilst that’s not disastrous form, Milan have fallen out of love with him. Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s arrival pushes the 24 year old further out, and Sportmediaset say he’s on the market.

Piatek is said to realise a move isn’t such a bad idea, but it’s thought he’s likelier to head out of Italy than move elsewhere in Serie A. West Ham are described as being in ‘pole position’, and they’ve made contact over a transfer.

Aston Villa are also said to have been in touch, along with Bundesliga club Bayer Leverkusen.

West Ham ‘seem the most willing to invest’ and this is a ‘decisive week’.

AC Milan paid €35m for Piatek, and they want €32m to be able to avoid a loss on their accounts.

East Anglian Times

'I don't really take any notice' - Downes focused on Town as West Ham join race to sign him

Young Ipswich Town star Flynn Downes insists he is focused only on the Blues' promotion push - as a number of clubs, including Premier League West Ham, are said to be considering a move for the midfielder in the January transfer window.

Downes, 20, has been one of Town's stand-out players so far this season, attracting interest from Championship duo QPR and Fulham, with West Ham now also said to be tracking him.

But the combative youngster says that, while it's a good confidence boost, he's concentrating on fuelling Town's bid to bounce straight back to the Championship.

He told the club's website: "I've heard the stuff that's been mentioned but I don't really take any notice of it.

"Speculation is all part of the game and while it's nice to hear and gives the confidence a bit of a boost, I don't take much interest in it.

"One day I'd love to play in the Premier League but every player will tell you that. It's been my dream since I was a kid but I'm not getting ahead of myself.

"The only thing that I'm concerned about now is getting back to winning ways here and helping the boys get promoted."

Sport Witness

Director in talks with West Ham to sign Hammers defender in this window

Fotospor claim Fenerbahce are interested in signing West Ham United left back Arthur Masuaku as they look to strengthen their squad in this transfer window.

The Turkish side are in dire need of a left-back, as their only player in this position, Hasan Ali Kaldirim, is out injured and won’t be returning any time soon.

According to Fotospor, Fenerbahce’s main transfer targets were Ricardo Rodriguez and Faouzi Ghoulam, but both players are likely to join other clubs, so they’ve identified the West Ham defender as an option.

It’s reported Fener sporting director Damien Comolli has held talks with West Ham with regards to the former Olympiacos player but there’s currently no breakthrough in the first round of negotiations.

However, it may not make much sense for West Ham to let him leave in this window, especially considering they extended his contract last summer.

His current deal will expire at the end of June 2024.

Masuaku has made nine appearances for the Hammers in the Premier League this season.

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

Mex Martillo 7:57 Wed Jan 8
Re: Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

Hammer and Pickle 3:55 Tue Jan 7
Re: Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Cheers Alan - a Haller Piątek pairing ought to facilitate a few Ratcheds.

Alan 2:24 Tue Jan 7
Re: Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Piatek story added.

Thanks Alan 2:10 Tue Jan 7
Re: Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
147man 2:04 Tue Jan 7

Thanks Alan 2:10 Tue Jan 7
Re: Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
147man 2:04 Tue Jan 7

147man 2:04 Tue Jan 7
Re: Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

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