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 12:48 Thu Aug 27
Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Lionel Messi's dad is already in England to discuss a two-year deal with Manchester City after the Argentina forward, 33, said he wants to leave Barcelona. (Sun)

If the deal goes ahead, it could cost City £500m. (Telegraph)

Any club wanting to sign Messi will have to pay about £90m a year to match his wages at Barcelona. (Times - subscription required)

Messi will attend Barcelona training on Monday to avoid legal problems with the club. (Sport - in Spanish)

Manchester United have the money to buy Messi, but Borussia Dortmund and England winger Jadon Sancho, 20, is still their main transfer target. (Express)

Barcelona and Uruguay striker Luis Suarez, 33, was called by new manager Ronald Koeman on Monday and told he needed to find another club. (Mail)

Brazil defender Thiago Silva, 35, is expected to have a Chelsea medical in Milan on Thursday, despite a late attempt by Paris St-Germain to offer him a new deal. (Sky Sports)

Chelsea could also be lining up a deal for 21-year-old French defender Malang Sarr, who left Nice at the end of his contract this summer. (Star)

Bournemouth and Wales winger David Brooks, 23, has been made available for transfer and is a possible alternative for Manchester United if they do not want to pay £108m for Sancho. (Express)

Manchester United have had a £22m bid for French defender Benoit Badiashile, 19, turned down by Monaco. (Star)

Tottenham are closing in on a deal for Wolverhampton Wanderers right-back Matt Doherty. Wolves are asking for around £20m for the 28-year-old Republic of Ireland defender but Spurs are hoping to pay less. (Independent)

Bayern Munich's Thiago Alcantara looks set to leave the European champions. The Bundesliga club want around £30m and Liverpool have been linked with the 29-year-old Spain midfielder. (Express)

Newly promoted West Brom have approached Queens Park Rangers regarding the possibility of signing 22-year-old English winger Eberechi Eze. (Birmingham Live)

Brighton look set to keep 22-year-old English defender Ben White, who spent last season on loan at Leeds, despite interest from Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester United. (Sun)

Free agent Edinson Cavani has rejected a summer move to Juventus due to his loyalty to former club Napoli. The 33-year-old Uruguay striker left Paris St-Germain at the end of last season. (Mail)

Guardian Rumour Mill

Barry Glendenning

With Luis Suárez about to be unceremoniously shown the door at the Nou Camp, in a state of affairs that is believed to be one of many reasons behind his best pal Leo Messi’s decision to hand in a transfer request, Manchester City striker Gabriel Jesus has been identified as a potential replacement by Barcelona for the Uruguayan striker. Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain are both reported to be interested in signing Messi, although Manchester City are reported to be in the box-seat with one tabloid reporting the player’s father is already in talks with the club. In the increasingly likely event of Messi’s departure from the club he has served for 20 years, it remains to be seen who will be given the unenviable and frankly impossible task of filling his Adidas Nemeziz 19.1s.

By his own lofty standards N’Golo Kanté had a fairly underwhelming season punctuated by injury at Chelsea but that hasn’t put off Internazionale, whose policy of rehoming Premier League stars has enjoyed more than a modicum of success. The Serie A side need to offload another high profile player before they can bring him in and Lautaro Martinez, Milan Skriniar and Marcelo Brozovic are among those they would consider letting go to help fund the deal.

Highly regarded QPR midfielder Eberechi Eze looks set to leave Loftus Road for pastures new, specifically the lush green rectangle of grass at Selhurst Park. Sky Sports News have reported the Crystal Palace have agreed a fee of £16m rising to £20m, with the Championships side insisting on a 20% sell-on clause that could yield them a pretty penny in years to come. Wolves full-back Matt Doherty is also on the move to Tottenham after 10 years of faithful service at Molineux. A fee of £15m has been agreed and Doherty’s former League of Ireland club Bohemians – for whom he never actually made a senior appearance – are in line for a bumper pay-day on the back of a clause they shrewdly included in the transfer deal between themselves and Wolves a decade ago.

Resigned to losing Doherty, Wolves are in search of a replacement and have identified Arsenal’s Ainsley Maitland-Niles as the man for the job. An initial bid of £15m for the 22-year-old has been rejected, with the Emirates beancounters confident they can hold out for a few quid more.

Celtic’s already slim chances of holding on to Odsonne Édouard suffered a major blow following their meek exit from the Champions League at the hands of Hungarian side Ferencvaros. The striker missed last night’s humiliation at Celtic Park, apparently through injury, but has been heavily linked with a move to Aston Villa. Crystal Palace, Leicester City and Arsenal are also reported to be keen. Following Celtic’s earliest elimination from the competition in 15 years, manager Neil Lennon some of his players were distracted by interest from other clubs. “Get your mentality right, get your attitude right,” he said. “If some of you don’t want to be here, leave. Let us work with players who want to be here.” Ouch.


Roberto poised to end West Ham stay with Real Valladolid transfer

Goalkeeper struggled after joining West Ham on free

Roberto’s disappointing spell at West Ham is set to end after Real Valladolid reached an agreement to sign the goalkeeper for an undisclosed fee.

The Spaniard struggled after joining West Ham on a free last year. The former Espanyol player came as Lukasz Fabianski’s deputy and was pushed into action when the Pole suffered a serious injury last September.

It soon became clear Roberto was not good enough for the Premier League. He made a series of errors and West Ham slid into a relegation battle after picking up one point from the six league games he started. The pressure on Manuel Pellegrini to drop Roberto was huge and he eventually bowed to the pressure, bringing in David Martin for the 1-0 win at Chelsea in November.

The signing of Roberto raised doubts over Pellegrini’s judgment and played a big part in the manager’s sacking in December. Roberto was recommended by Mario Husillos, who lost his job as director of football when Pellegrini was replaced by David Moyes.

Moyes targeted a new back-up goalkeeper in January, signing Darren Randolph from Middlesbrough, and Roberto moved back to Spain, joining Alavés on loan. West Ham subsidised 75% of his £30,000-a-week wages there and have been looking for a buyer since the end of the season. Valladolid finished 13th in La Liga last season.

West Ham, who are set to lose out to Crystal Palace in the race to sign Eberechi Eze from Queens Park Rangers, are looking to raise funds through sales. They have sold Jordan Hugill to Norwich in a deal that could rise to £5m and Albian Ajeti to Celtic for £4.5m.


Rapid-fire start sees Under-23s surge past Orient

Leyton Orient 1-3 West Ham United U23s
Pre-season match

West Ham United U23s recorded a second win over Football League opposition in the space of five days as they overcame Leyton Orient 3-1 at the Breyer Group Stadium.

The Irons made a confident – and enthralling – start at their senior opposition’s home, going two goals up after just ten minutes through Mesaque Dju and Dan Kemp.

They continued to create chances at will and added a third when Kemp’s cross was turned in by Orient defender Sam Ling, but a raft of changes at half-time saw the home team in turn dominate the second half, netting through Lee Angol.

Lead coach Dmitri Halajko will nevertheless have been delighted to see his young charges once again test their mettle against senior Football League opposition in pre-season – and, after Friday’s 3-2 win over Cambridge United, once again succeed.

With a number of the Irons’ players having enjoyed their non-competitive first-team debuts the day before, the incentive was there for them at Breyer Group Stadium to double down on the week’s achievements.

Double down they duly did, taking the lead within five minutes when No9 Sean Adarkwa – amongst those to make their senior bows against Wycombe Wanderers – nicked the ball high from Orient's centre-back.

Bearing down on goal, the striker opted against shooting and instead laid it off to the advancing Mesaque Dju, who had plenty of time inside the area to slot into the bottom corner for his second goal in two pre-season games.

The home team attempted to assert themselves in the game, but it was from the Hammers’ next attack that they doubled their advantage. Oladapo Afolayan, playing in central midfield, spotted a gap in the ranks of red shirts and drove forwards, being brought down by a late challenge from Jobi McAnuff.

25 yards out and with plenty of work to do, Dan Kemp swiftly stepped up and curled an inch-perfect, flat free-kick in off the right-hand post.

Confidence was surging and the boys in Claret and Blue nearly trebled their advantage soon after when a superb ball from Manny Longelo carved its way through to Adarkwa. Sam Sergeant did well to save the subsequent effort with his legs, before a red shirt smothered our trialist’s follow-up.

Adarkwa’s movement was causing Leyton Orient all sorts of problems, and another slick run in behind afforded him space for a rising drive from a tight angle which flashed just past the top corner.

West Ham deservedly trebled their lead before half-time. Some deft footwork gave Kemp space to whip a ball into the fabled 'corridor of uncertainty' and, facing his own goal, Orient defender Sam Ling diverted in.

Moments later, a flowing right-to-left move saw Dju feed Longelo overlapping inside the area, but Sergeant was equal to the No3’s rising drive.

Lead coach Dmitri Halajko shuffled his pack at half-time to grant his whole squad valuable match minutes, with Leyton Orient going even further by introducing a whole new XI for the second half.

With fresh legs on their side, Orient admittedly had the better of the second 45, creating their first chance when Lee Angol’s attempted chip sailed harmlessly wide of Nathan Trott’s far post.

Josh Okotcha was then forced into a fine recovery challenge as Angol bore down on goal after running down the channel, moments before Trott kicked away the same striker’s fizzing cutback.

If Trott hadn’t had too much to do up to that point, he soon after demonstrated his excellent reflexes with a point-blank save from an Orient header, after a free-kick was well recycled at the far post.

Halajko may have been disappointed with the way the Hammers eventually did concede with fifteen minutes to go. A long ball over the top freed Angol in behind, and the striker had plenty of time to stroke past Hammers’ substitute goalkeeper Krisztian Hegyi.

Hegyi excelled moments later, however, as another direct pass led to Angol volleying acrobatically from inside the penalty area. The Hungarian, however, sprung to his right to tip it onto the bar, moments before Harrison Ashby made a fine last-ditch challenge with an Orient forward closing in on goal.

The home team were on top and their greater physicality showing as Josh Coulson missed a glorious chance for Orient. The Irons struggled to deal with another in-swinging set piece, and Coulson, unmarked, nodded over when he should have scored.

Hegyi was then forced into an excellent save moments later, turning Conor Wilkinson’s dipping drive onto - and over - his bar.

That was the last chance of another highly satisfactory night for Halajko and the U23s, who furthered their preparations for their return to Premier League 2 Division 1 with an impressive victory in another tough test passed with flying colours.

West Ham United U23s: Trott (Hegyi 70), Ashby, Akinola, Cardoso (Okotcha 45), Longelo (Greenidge 65), Trialist (Lewis 74), Rosa (Watson 45), Afolayan (Chesters 45), Kemp (Diallo 65), Adarkwa (Swyer 65), Dju (Odubeko 45)
Subs: Forson

Goals: Dju 5, Kemp 11, Ling (o.g.) 36

Leyton Orient XI First Half: Sargeant, Ling, Widdowson, McAnuff, Maguire-Drew, Papadopoulos, Sotiriou, Turley, Ogie, Johnson, Wright

Leyton Orient XI Second Half: Sargeant, Cisse, Happe, Coulson, Clay, Wilkinson, Dayton, Judd, Brophy, Ifeanyi, Angol

Goal: Angol 75

Evening Standard

West Ham midfielder Jack Wilshere open to MLS move this summer in order to reignite his career

Jack Rosser

Jack Wilshere is open to a move to Major League Soccer if he leaves West Ham this summer.

The Hammers are keen to get Wilshere’s £100,000-a-week wages off their books and the midfielder believes going to America could reignite his career.

Wilshere has struggled since he left Arsenal in the summer of 2018.

He fell out of favour with former manager Manuel Pellegrini and the same thing happened with current manager David Moyes. The 28-year-old has started only six times for West Ham in the Premier League and a move looks increasingly likely.

It is understood America has emerged as a possible option for Wilshere, with the England international open to the idea.

His desire to do so is likely to attract a number of suitors, with clubs keen to take advantage of the chance to sign a marquee player.

Several England stars have played in the MLS, including David Beckham, Wayne Rooney and Steven Gerrard, and Wilshere could follow in their footsteps.

Indeed, Beckham’s own franchise, Inter Miami, are one side who could be interested .

The club are keen to make statement signings after being formed two years ago and this month brought in France midfielder Blaise Matuidi.

Wilshere still has one year left on his contract, so a loan move could be an option this summer.

Sides competing for promotion from the Championship are thought to be interested, but it is uncertain whether that would be attractive to Wilshere right now.

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

sanfrancis-co-uk 4:37 Fri Aug 28
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Oh and cheers Alan.

sanfrancis-co-uk 4:36 Fri Aug 28
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Roberto to win the global goalkeepers golden gloves and Wilshire to become the next Beckham,odds on.

With Kind Regards 7:56 Thu Aug 27
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Mex Martillo 5.34

COOL HAND LUKE 7:50 Thu Aug 27
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan, trust you are doing okay fella?I

Jeez,we absolutely dropped a bollock with that Wilshere 3 year deal... We should've done PAYP like Arsenal were offering him, it didn't take a genius to see what was on the cards.

Mex Martillo 5:34 Thu Aug 27
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
bill green 3:50 Thu Aug 27

bill green 3:50 Thu Aug 27
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
ted fenton 1:50 Thu Aug 27

Kaiser Zoso 2:10 Thu Aug 27
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Texas Iron 2:05 Thu Aug 27
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)

ted fenton 1:50 Thu Aug 27
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan 1:20 Thu Aug 27

Thanks Alan 1:20 Thu Aug 27
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
147man 1:06 Thu Aug 27

147man 1:06 Thu Aug 27
Re: Thursday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan

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