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 1:40 Sun Oct 25
Sunday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Liverpool have opened talks with Schalke about a £20m new year move for Turkey defender Ozan Kabak, 20, following the long-term injury to Netherlands defender Virgil van Dijk. (Sunday Mirror)

Chelsea are still intent on signing West Ham midfielder Declan Rice, 21, in the January transfer window, although the Hammers are prepared to give the England international a new contract which would double his £60,000-a-week wages. (Star on Sunday)

Former Arsenal and England midfielder Jack Wilshere, 28, is favouring a move to the MLS as he looks for a new club after leaving West Ham. (Sunday Mirror)

The Premier League is hoping to persuade Fifa to allow a 'margin of error' on tight offside calls, with referees' chief Mike Riley set to speak to Dutch Eredivisie bosses after they brought in a 10cm 'linesman's call'. (Mail on Sunday)

Manchester United's Argentina goalkeeper Sergio Romero wants to leave Old Trafford. The 33-year-old hopes an agreement can be reached for his contract to be terminated after finding out on social media he had been dropped from United's Premier League squad. (Star on Sunday)

Real Madrid have contacted former Tottenham and Southampton boss Mauricio Pochettino about the possibility of replacing Zinedine Zidane. (El Transistor, in Spanish)

Leeds want to make another attempt to sign Wigan's 17-year-old English midfielder Sean McGurk, having had a bid turned down by administrators in the last transfer window. (Sun on Sunday)

Brighton boss Graham Potter has dismissed speculation linking English defender Ben White, 23, with a move to Liverpool as "football noise". (Sunday Mirror)

Former Brighton defender turned BBC pundit Mark Lawrenson says White could follow in his footsteps by moving to Liverpool, but does not think the Premier League champions will complete a deal in the next transfer window. (Argus)

Fulham boss Scott Parker admits his future is out of his hands after a fifth defeat in six Premier League matches. (Sky Sports)

Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho has called on chairman Daniel Levy to back him by evolving the team through the transfer market as Liverpool have done in recent years. (Sunday Express)

Wolves, West Ham, Crystal Palace, Southampton and Newcastle are monitoring 27-year-old Reading captain Liam Moore. (TeamTalk)

Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer reassured Netherlands midfielder Donny van de Beek, 23, that his time will come at Manchester United after he was an unused substitute in the 0-0 draw against Chelsea on Saturday. (Manchester Evening News)

Solskjaer decided that the Manchester United team should stay together in the Lowry Hotel before Saturday's match, for the first time since their 2-1 win over Manchester City in March. (Star on Sunday)

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp says selling English striker Rhian Brewster, 20, to Sheffield United "was really hard". (Sunday Express)

Southampton's England left-back Ryan Bertrand, 31, has given his support to the Premier League's No Room For Racism campaign after revealing his own experiences of abuse as a child. (Sunday Mirror)


Phil Foden rescues point for out-of-sorts Manchester City against West Ham

Jonathan Liew at the London Stadium

Something really needs to be done about these humdrum mid-table Premier League games. Perhaps the next mutation of Project Big Picture will have something to say about fixtures like these: two flawed, ­ambition-free sides in pure survival mode, both ultimately grateful for the point. Maybe it’s time for the likes to Everton and Aston Villa to cut the Manchester Citys of this world loose.

We’re joking, sort of. But it said a good deal, not just about this game but about the trajectories of the two clubs involved, that at full-time both sets of players looked equally disappointed. West Ham may have ridden their luck a touch. They may have spent most of the last half-hour defending. But this was a game that could just as easily gone their way. They know, as do most of their rivals, that this City is currently there for the taking.

This is not a new story. Their decline over the past 12 months has been gradual, inexorable and ­naturally still punctured by moments of real translucent inspiration, great performances, towering individual flourishes. But at the moment they feel like a half-present team: a team against the tide, drifting in and out of their old selves, able to glimpse it in parts, but never the whole thing for the whole time.

This was a precis of many of their recent performances: ­dignified, professional and yet essentially incomplete. Their first half was ­abominable: one-paced, short of ideas and curiously lacking in conviction.

The second, following the introduction of the sugary Phil Foden, was better. And yet here again, missed chances and imperfect ­decision-making proved the ­difference between one point and three. Sergio Agüero’s hamstring injury again leaves them without a recognised striker. In his place Raheem Sterling missed two fine chances to win the game late on.

For David Moyes’s cautiously evolving squad, meanwhile, another half-step in the right direction. Having taken an early and spectacular lead through the flying boot of Michail Antonio, they withstood the inevitable second-half backlash with guts, organisation and judgment. Declan Rice was colossal in midfield. Lukasz Fabianski’s saves kept them in it at the death.

“We could have played much better,” Moyes said. “But brilliant character by the players. We defended really well.”

Antonio’s goal was a piece of art: using the heft of Rúben Dias to winch his body into position and ­uncoiling a bicycle kick past Ederson, who was unsighted. City howled purposelessly for a handball by Tomas Soucek, but the blame was their own: João Cancelo finding himself isolated, with too little pressure on Vladimir Coufal’s cross.

Michail Antonio had put West Ham ahead in first half at the London Stadium with a fine finish

Moyes’s gameplan was ­working a treat: a deep, well-drilled back five, the pace of Jarrod Bowen on the break and with Antonio as a ­barrelling one-man agent of chaos up front there was always a pressure-release available.

Two key moments changed the course of the game: Antonio’s injury on 52 minutes and just before that the equalising goal from Foden.

His energy was just what City needed: a little human bath bomb, fizzing and effervescing and zipping across the surface, sweetening City’s attacks and finding his way into West Ham’s vital nooks and crevices.

It took him six minutes to put City back on track, turning and finishing after Cancelo had surprised Coufal with a scintillating burst of pace. With Antonio’s replacement, Andriy Yarmolenko, offering no threat, and with Kevin De Bruyne entering with a quarter of the game remaining, West Ham settled in for a dogged rearguard.

And yet in the end-to-end ­pandemonium of the finish, it was telling that West Ham were just as prepared to throw numbers forward as City. Pablo Fornals could have snatched the game in the dying ­minutes when he tried to lob Ederson and ending up chipping it straight into his arms.

Honours even, then, and on a chilly afternoon in east London you would struggle to argue either side deserved any less.


Lukasz Fabianski – 7.5

Very little he could do about Phil Foden's equaliser. Huge save from Raheem Sterling late on.

Vladimir Coufal – 7

Generally strong in one-on-one situations and kept things simple defensively on the West Ham right.

Fabian Balbuena - 6

Appeared to struggle with the runners of City towards the end of the game. Raheem Sterling was a nuisance for him.

Angelo Ogbonna - 7

Had no problems dealing with Sergio Aguero before half-time. City had more movement thereafter.

Aaron Cresswell - 7

Often the spare man at the back and was not really called upon to deal with Riyad Mahrez on the inside.

Arthur Masuaku - 7

Kept Mahrez very quiet and dealt with Kyle Walker on the cover when the right back broke free.

Jarrod Bowen - 7

Willing runner down the right and had the quality to take the game to City on the break.

Tomas Soucek – 6.5

David Moyes has additional solidity with Soucek in there and appears a very shrewd signing.

Declan Rice - 7

Such a powerful presence in midfield. Didn't give the ball away once in the first half.

Pablo Fornals – 5.5

His late fluffed chip when clean through with the flag down summed up Fornals' afternoon.

Michail Antonio – 7.5

Stunning goal. Leads the line courageously and owns the finesse to punish defences when given the chance.


Andriy Yarmolenko (for Antonio, 52) – 5

Sebastian Haller (for Bowen, 69) - 6

Subs not used: Randolph, Fredericks, Diop, Noble, Lanzini


West Ham hold on for battling draw with disappointing Manchester City

Matt Law, Football News Correspondent

This game was rated as a 12a by the cinema chain allowing supporters to watch it inside just a 10-minute stroll from West Ham United’s empty London Stadium.

But those Hammers fans fearing another X-rated mauling were left pleasantly surprised, as their side broke an eight-game Premier League losing run against Manchester City marshalled by their leading man Declan Rice.

City have now dropped seven points already this season and the club have still only won one top-flight away game in 104 in which they have trailed at half-time since April 1995.

Pep Guardiola’s men had scored 22 goals in their previous five visits to West Ham, but this is not currently the free-flowing City team we have become accustomed to and they lost Sergio Aguero to a suspected hamstring injury.

Whether it is a lengthy injury list, uncertainty over Guardiola’s long-term future, the loss of David Silva or the short pre-season, something is not quite right with City so far this term. They took their tally to 23 away goals against the Hammers in six visits, but eight points from the opening five games is the club’s worst start to a season in six years.

“Of course, I would prefer to have more results, but this is a time to struggle and you have to analyse the start we’ve had with the injuries, the lack of preparation and the recovery time. The players are giving everything,” said Guardiola.

On Aguero’s injury, Guardiola added: “It’s a muscle, a hamstring, but we will know tomorrow (Sunday) exactly.”

Guardiola had named an unchanged side for the first time in three years, but he was forced to replace the injured Aguero with Phil Foden at the end of a tepid first half in which they had fallen behind to Michail Antonio’s brilliant opener.

The change produced instant dividends, as Foden equalised with City’s second shot on target just six minutes after being sent on, but West Ham held on to record their first point against City since January 2016.

West Ham have now come through a hideous set of fixtures with victories over Wolverhampton Wanderers and Leicester City, while picking up draws against Tottenham Hotspur and City, who they are level with on eight points.

“When I saw the fixtures, like everyone probably did, I thought ‘this is going to be tough’,” said Moyes. “But we’ve taken two wins and two draws against teams that are going to be very difficult to take points from and that’s very creditable.”

Goalscorer Antonio was forced off with a second-half problem and Moyes added: “He felt his hamstring, like he did against Tottenham, but hopefully it’s not too much.”

Having survived a couple of early scares, with Ilkay Gundogan shooting wide and Vladimir Coufal needing to make a vital tackle to stop Ruben Dias, West Ham took a shock lead through Antonio.

City’s defenders stopped and appealed for handball against Thomas Soucek, but the midfielder found Coufal, whose cross was acrobatically vollied into the net past Antonio.

Ederson continued to claim the goal should have been ruled out, but he really should have been berating his team-mates for switching off.

Antonio almost caught out the City defence again, when he ran through on goal, but Eric Garcia did well to recover and make a goal-saving challenge.

Foden’s introduction meant that Raheem Sterling moved up front, with the midfielder forming a front three, along with Bernardo Silva and Riyad Mahrez, behind him.

The 20-year-old quickly netted his third goal of the season by collecting a low Joao Cancelo cross before turning and shooting past Lukasz Fabianski.

Moyes was then forced to make a change of his own with Antonio having to go off, but instead of replacing him with striker Sebastien Haller, the Scotsman called on winger Andriy Yarmolenko and pushed Jarrod Bowen into the middle.

Yarmoleko shot over the bar for the hosts, before Fabian Balbuena had to be alert to block a cross from Cancelo, while City substitute Kevin De Bruyne sent a free-kick straight into the arms of Fabianski and Arthur Masuaku cleared off the boot of Mahrez.

West Ham thought they had squandered the best late chance to snatch all three points, as Yarmolenko played Pablo Fornals through on goal. Ederson came out to the edge of his area and the midfielder could only ship the ball straight into the goalkeeper’s hands.

But Sterling missed an even better opportunity. De Bruyne nicked the ball off Masuaku and played the England international through on goal. He looked certain to score, but Fabianki spread himself well and the Manchester City man failed to beat him.

Mahrez clipped the outside of the post in stoppage time, but West Ham more than deserved their point and their popcorn-munching fans will no doubt have delivered some five-star ratings as they left the cinema down the road.


2 pros and 2 cons to West Ham United eyeing move for in-demand EFL defender

By Jacob Potter

West Ham United are reportedly rivalling Crystal Palace to the potential signing of Reading full-back Omar Richards according to the Reading Chronicle.

Richards has caught the eye with a number of impressive showings in recent seasons for the Royals, and it appears as though he could have a decision to make on his future in the coming months.

The left-back has made eight appearances in all competitions this season for a Reading side that are currently sat top of the Championship table, and six points clear at the summit.

The Reading Chronicle also claim that the Berkshire-based side are looking at holding talks with Richards over a new deal at the Madejski Stadium in the near future.

West Ham have started this year’s campaign strongly themselves, with David Moyes’ men sat 11th in the top-flight standings after a hard-fought point against Manchester City in their most recent match.

We take a look at TWO pros and TWO cons to West Ham potentially signing Richards in the January transfer window.

Pro: He has age on his side.
Richards is still only 22, but has shown real maturity and confidence to force his way into the Reading starting XI in recent years.

He kept the likes of Tyler Blackett and Jordan Obita out of the Reading team last season, which shows that he’s a player with real talent, and has a bright future ahead of him, especially if he can build on recent performances.

West Ham would be getting a player with his best years still ahead of him.

Con: The cost of any potential deal.
Reading are reportedly looking to tie Richards down to a new deal after West Ham’s rumoured interest in landing his signature, which shows how highly they rate the defender.

If he is to sign a new contract with the Royals, then it’ll make any potential deal tough to complete for West Ham, as Reading have already shown in the past with John Swift, that they won’t be pressured into cashing-in on some of their key players.

Pro: Richards is playing the best football of his career to date
Richards has been one of Reading’s standout performers in the Championship this season and it certainly hasn’t come as a surprise to see him attracting interest from Premier League clubs.

If West Ham were to strike a deal with the Berkshire-based side, then they would be getting a player that is playing at the very top of his game so far.

Con: His lack of experience in the Premier League
Premier League clubs are often looking at players in the Championship, as they look to add depth to their squads, and that’s clearly the case with West Ham United.

But some of them come with an element of risk, especially when they don’t have any experience of playing in the top-flight of English football.

Richards falls into that category, and some could argue that there are safer options out there for West Ham in the New Year.

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

Thanks Alan 1:59 Sun Oct 25
Re: Sunday newspapers (includes West Ham)
ted fenton 1:57 Sun Oct 25

ted fenton 1:57 Sun Oct 25
Re: Sunday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan.

Mr. Burns 1:46 Sun Oct 25
Re: Sunday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Cheers Al

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