WHO Poll
Q: 2021/22 What competition should we prioritise this season?
a. The league is our bread & butter, so this year let's have a club sandwich
b. We're owed an FA Cup after Gerrard nicked our last one in 06, our name's on it in 22
c. A bye to the League Cup 3rd round gives us a good start, let's make it count
d. The Europa is our best ticket to the Champions League, this is the one
e. What's wrong with you, let's do the lot, has the quadruple ever been done

Alan 1:20 Wed Feb 26
Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Manchester United have stepped up their interest in Aston Villa's 24-year-old midfielder Jack Grealish. (Manchester Evening News)

United are likely to sell England forward Jesse Lingard, 27, and Brazil midfielder Andreas Pereira, 24, at the end of the season. (Express)

Arsenal could listen to offers for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang this summer to avoid losing the 30-year-old on a free next year. (Mail)

Inter Milan have made Aubameyang their number one transfer target should Argentina striker Lautaro Martinez, 22, leave this summer. (Calciomercato)

Alternatively, Gabon forward Aubameyang is yet to rule out signing a new contract at Arsenal but talks have not progressed. (Metro)

Juventus president Andrea Agnelli says the Italian champions have considered making an approach for Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola. (Manchester Evening News)

Liverpool's 'Philippe Coutinho clause' means Barcelona would have to pay the Reds £225m to sign Senegal midfielder Sadio Mane, 27. (Mirror)

Manchester City could lose many of their key players, including 25-year-old England forward Raheem Sterling, if they win this season's Champions League. (ESPN)

Arsenal are interested in Spain U21 left-back Marc Cucurella and are willing to pay a £20m release clause to sign the 21-year-old, who is on loan at Getafe from Barcelona. (Cadena Cope via Sport Witness)

Real Madrid's Spain defender Sergio Ramos, 33, is in no rush to discuss a new deal at the Bernabeu but says his relationship with the club is "magnificent". (Goal)

Spain manager Luis Enrique is concerned about 25-year-old Chelsea goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga's lack of recent minutes as he plans for the summer's European Championship. (AS - in Spanish)

Real Madrid's Germany midfielder Toni Kroos, 30, says a contract with Manchester United "had basically been done" before then-manager David Moyes was sacked. (The Athletic - subscription required)

Manchester United sent a scout to watch Real Madrid's 21-year-old Norway midfielder Martin Odegaard in action for loan side Real Sociedad. (Star)

United are also monitoring Gent's 20-year-old Canada forward Jonathan David. (Mail)

But David's agent believes such a move may be "a step too big at the moment". (FourFourTwo)

Former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says he understood Bayern Munich's 24-year-old Germany midfielder Serge Gnabry would remain with the Gunners. (beIN Sports, via Metro)

Arsenal are ready to pay the £21m release clause of Barcelona's 21-year-old Spain full-back Marc Cucurella, who is on loan at Getafe. (COPE, via Express)

Real Madrid are monitoring Crystal Palace's Norway striker Alexander Sorloth, 24, who has scored 21 goals in 30 appearances while on loan at Turkish side Trabzonspor this season. (Evening Standard)

Inter Milan are unhappy with the performances of Chile forward Alexis Sanchez, 31, who is likely to return to Manchester United in the summer. (Star)

Dundalk manager Vinny Perth says the club tried to sign Republic of Ireland striker Troy Parrott, 18, on loan from Tottenham in January. (Irish Independent)

Arsenal hope to arrange a pre-season friendly against Villarreal at Emirates Stadium this summer, which will act as a farewell match for former manager Arsene Wenger and midfielder Santi Cazorla. (Mail)

Guardian Rumour Mill

Stuart Goodwin

Get the right keeper in at the right age and you’ve got the position sorted for a decade, so goes the logic. Chelsea struck gold when they upgraded Carlo Cudicini for Petr Cech in 2004, and the 11 years’ service they got from him took in four Premier League titles, one Champions League win, one in the Europa League, plus four FA Cups and three League Cups. Thibaut Courtois may have toddled off a little early for their liking, after just the four major trophies including two league winners’ medals, but bringing in Kepa Arrizabalaga for well over £70m showed full intent to repeat the trick.

Now, with the worst defensive record in the Premier League’s top nine, Bayern Munich cutting through them like a hot knife through already melted butter, and – crucially – former Manchester City figure of fun Willy Caballero suddenly being preferred to the Spaniard, the Do One door at Stamford Bridge is not so much slightly ajar than off the hinges with an industrial garden vac on the other side. Hence word that Frank Lampard is sanctioning an eyecatching Arrizabalaga-plus-£25m deal to Atlético Madrid to land Jan Oblak.

Good news for Mill correspondents from next week onwards: Manchester United are intent on getting that whole Jack Grealish saga done and dusted this week. That’s £45m to you right now, Aston Villa, and let’s not worry about him potentially putting in a decent turn at the Euros that might make you want to charge more than the market rate for one and a half Alex Iwobis.

That’s not all United have in mind, either. They’re keen to try and attract the Belle and Sebastian dollar by bringing in New York-born Canadian forward Jonathan David – Canada’s player of the year, don’t you know? – who has 22 goals so far this season for Belgian side Gent. The 20-year-old has already attracted a £5m bid from Porto, which was roundly laughed at. And the Old Trafford scouting tentacles also found their way to Real Sociedad’s win over Valencia last weekend, to have a look-see at all of Ferran Torres, Carlos Soler, Willian José, Martin Ødegaard and Alexander Isak. Jesse Lingard and Andreas Pereira could be among those making way for what is sounding like being a LOT of new arrivals this summer.

Probably for the best that Ed Woodward is eyeing deals for most of the players in Europe, because Jadon Sancho has decided he might actually quite like to staying at Borussia Dortmund after all. And lo: the shoulders of United, Chelsea and Liverpool did sag.

“What do you mean you don’t want to commit to a new deal at Arsenal?” Mikel Arteta wondered to Bukayo Saka. “Fine – I’ll buy that lustrously maned Marc Cucurella Getafe have on loan from Barcelona then.” That’ll show him.

Bit more keeper news to report: Huddersfield have their designs on Celtic veteran Craig Gordon, while at the other end of the experience scale, England under-19 international Curtis Anderson, who plied his youth trade at Manchester City, is training at Charlton and could be ready to sign a permanent deal after a spell with Charlotte Independence in the US.


Extreme rookie Ngakia an amazing prospect

Jeremy Ngakia’s West Ham emergence appears to demonstrate that the decision making process on whether youngsters learn their trade at the club or are allowed out on loan is largely correct.

The 19 year old received the most severe test possible against Sadio Mane on Monday evening and came through with flying colours giving a near faultless performance.

That the lad has made just eight appearances at under 23 level for the club, and remains an extreme PL rookie in real terms – his performances in two games against Liverpool this season his achievements cannot be overstated.

Indeed he was only .26 percentage points behind Angelo Ogbonna as the Hammers man of the match on Monday evening- an extraordinary achievement for the teenager who was also very impressive on his debut appearance for the first team against the PL leaders at the London Stadium on January 29.

Like Declan Rice and Grady Diangana before him Jeremy has been developing d his game at West Ham whilst others like Conor Coventry and Nathan Holland were allowed to get regular football elsewhere.

Hailing from Deptford , Ngakia joined the Hammers at the age of 14. He made 17 appearances for the U18s side during 2016/17 while still a schoolboy and signing his first scholarship papers that summer.

Now he looks set for a highly successful Hammers career and with Ryan Fredericks on the long term injury list could have staked a major claim for his job by the end of the season.

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

Sven Roeder 10:05 Wed Feb 26
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

Ngakia should have played every game since the first Liverpool one.
If Moyes doesn’t start him and Bowen on Saturday he should be sacked on the spot.

chiff 5:31 Wed Feb 26
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

Texas Iron 4:27 Wed Feb 26
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Ngakia a great prospect...already better than Fredricks...

Jasnik 3:42 Wed Feb 26
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Extreme rookie Ngakia an amazing prospect - bet he don't even make the team for southampton

Mex Martillo 3:17 Wed Feb 26
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
ted fenton 2:45 Wed Feb 26

ted fenton 2:45 Wed Feb 26
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan.

Thanks Alan 1:39 Wed Feb 26
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
claret59 1:25 Wed Feb 26

blueeyed.handsomeman 1:26 Wed Feb 26
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
THanks Alan

claret59 1:25 Wed Feb 26
Re: Wednesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
thanks alan.
(i don't say that anywhere near often enough)

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