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 1:59 Tue Apr 6
Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Super-agent Mino Raiola has hit back at transfer rumours concerning Borussia Dortmund's Norwegian striker Erling Braut Haaland, 20. (Goal)

Borussia Dortmund chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke insists the German side are planning for next season with Haaland. (Dazn via Mirror)

However, he says the Bundesliga side will listen to offers for the club's England winger Jadon Sancho. (Manchester Evening News)

Manager Pep Guardiola says Manchester City may decide to spend over £100m on one player in the future, but remains coy on speculation linking the club with Haaland. (Sky Sports)

Barcelona will continue to pursue the signing of the Norwegian after meeting with his representatives last week, but sources at the club say it will be "very difficult" to do a deal. (ESPN)

Spanish goalkeeper David de Gea, 30, is ready to move on from Manchester United. (Mail)

Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane has broken his silence on transfer speculation linking Liverpool and Egypt forward Mohamed Salah, 28, with a move to the Bernabeu. (Liverpool Echo)

Arsenal want to keep Norwegian midfielder Martin Odegaard at the club when his loan spell from Real Madrid ends, but Liverpool are also interested in the 22-year-old. (AS - in Spanish)

Villarreal are hoping to sign Argentine defender Juan Foyth, 23, from Tottenham this summer on a permanent deal and for less than the option fee of £13m. He is currently on loan at the Spanish side. (Football Insider)

Jorge Valdano, the former general manager of Real Madrid, is is open to the idea of Los Blancos using Brazilian winger Vinicius Junior, 20, as part of a deal to sign Paris St-Germain and France forward Kylian Mbappe, 22. (El Transistor via Marca)

Arsenal and Brazil defender David Luiz, 33, will have to take a pay cut if he is to stay at the Premier League club beyond this summer. (Sun)

Paris St-Germain attacker Angel di Maria, 33, said it would be "wonderful" to play alongside fellow Argentine Lionel Messi, 33, amid doubts over Messi's Barcelona future. (AS)

Former Roma co-owner and chairman James Pallotta has expressed an interest in buying a Premier League club, name-checking Newcastle United. (The Athletic - subscription only)

Veteran Swedish striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, 39, is set to sign a one-year contract extension at AC Milan. (Sky Sports)

Juventus' entire playing and backroom staff are on trial for the rest of this season following a poor campaign to date which might result in the Italian league champions failing to qualify for the Champions League. (Mail)

Norwich City will look after Norwegian Alex Tettey whatever the future holds for the 35-year-old midfielder. Tettey has been at Carrow Road since 2012 and his contract ends in the summer. (Norwich Evening News)


West Ham hold off Wolves to go fourth after Jesse Lingard inspires win

Paul Doyle at Molineux

What started as an ambition too ludicrous to mention is becoming increasingly realistic for West Ham, who moved closer to Champions League qualification thanks to another inspirational performance by Jesse Lingard. The Manchester United loanee scored for the sixth time in his eighth appearance for David Moyes’s side before creating another two goals as West Ham won a rollicking match and climbed to fourth in the table. In other words, the man who is proving to be one of the signings of the season is guiding his team towards one of the exploits of the season.

West Ham have not finished in the top four since 1986 but their display at Molineux suggested they believe that feat is now within their grasp. Lingard got them going with a wonderful goal in the sixth minute and then helped Pablo Fornals and Jarrod Bowen to make it 3-0. But they had to work hard to hold on to that lead against dangerous hosts, who struck back through Leander Dendoncker and Fábio Silva.

“After 30 games it’s not a fluke to be in the top four,” said Moyes. “We’re there because we’ve played well enough. We’re not in the final furlong, we’ve got a couple of big jumps to go, but we’re challenging so let’s try to do everything to stay there. We’re going to go for it.”

After relinquishing a three-goal lead against Arsenal two weeks ago, West Ham were determined not to let this chance slip, though Moyes said they should have made things more comfortable for themselves after taking another 3-0 lead. “Managing the game is something we need to think about doing much better. We’re in such a good position that I think the boys are just enjoying the thought that we can keep scoring more goals.”

Both teams suffered serious blows before this match, with West Ham losing Declan Rice to injury and Wolves deprived of Willy Boly, who tested positive for Covid-19, and Jonny Castro, who tore a cruciate ligament in training on the same knee as eight months ago.

Wolves could have opened the scoring after two minutes, when Daniel Podence gave Willian José an early chance to score his first goal since joining the club in January. The striker drove wide from 14 yards.

Soon West Ham pushed the hosts backwards. In the fourth minute Michail Antonio glided past Dendoncker and unleashed a fierce long-range shot that Rui Patrício tipped on to the post. Two minutes later West Ham took the lead in irresistible style.

Vladimir Coufal created the goal by winning the ball in his own box, playing a one-two with Fornals and feeding Lingard, still inside West Ham territory. Lingard shifted into a gear that no one else seemed to possess and tore forward 40 yards, evading defenders before firing emphatically past Patrício.

Rayan Aït-Nouri blasted wide as Wolves sought an instant equaliser but soon the visitors increased their lead. Lingard was instrumental again, showing tenacity and trickery to keep the ball alive and play it to Arthur Masuaku, who helped the ball on to Fornals to finish calmly from 10 yards.

In a thrilling contest Podence then headed on to the crossbar before Antonio fluffed a chance to make it 3-0, misdirecting a header from seven yards out. The West Ham striker limped off in the 36th minute but his replacement, Bowen, scored within moments of arriving. Lingard was again the instigator thanks to another exceptional run and pass, which Bowen rewarded with a crisp finish.

After Willian José and Rúben Neves spurned more chances for Wolves, Dendoncker finally found the net for the hosts just before the break, heading powerfully into the net from a superb run and cross by Adama Traoré.

Nuno Espírito Santo introduced Silva for Podence and switched to 4-4-2 for the second half. But West Ham emerged as the more dangerous side, Bowen twice going close to increasing their lead. However, Silva set West Ham’s nerves jangling when he made it 3-2, finishing smartly from a tight angle after classy service by Pedro Neto.

Wolves did their utmost to find an equaliser but Dendoncker and Neto snatched at their best chances, both failing to keep shots down from inviting range.


West Ham survive Wolves comeback to move into the top four as Jesse Lingard stars

John Percy

For all the focus on Jesse Lingard’s impressive rebirth at West Ham United, perhaps the question should be asked on how Ole Gunnar Solskjaer failed to get the best out of him.

Lingard was given the deep-freeze treatment at Manchester United but has proven over the last two months that he remains an outstanding Premier League performer, giving West Ham renewed hope of a return to European football even without the injured Declan Rice.

No player has been involved in more league goals than Lingard since the start of February, with six strikes and three assists, and this was another excellent display from the United loanee.

How Solskjaer struggled to find a role for the England international at Old Trafford is difficult to fathom, backing players with a fraction of Lingard’s ability, but West Ham are only reaping the benefits.

This hard-fought victory against a depleted Wolves lifted them up into fourth place and Champions League contention, with Lingard’s hopes of involvement at Euro 2021 remaining very much alive.

A shimmering menace in a free role in front of the midfield, he was sensational in the first-half.

"I have not played much in the last two years so to play week in week out is good. The team help me,” said Lingard.

"It is about maintaining and keeping focus. We have tough fixtures but the lads are ready. There is always room for improvement. It is a great victory and we take the positives."

The injury to Rice is untimely yet will barely merit a mention in the review of this seventh away win of the season: their first league double over Wolves since the 1922/23 campaign.

It was the 4-0 win over Wolves which sparked West Ham’s season into life back in September, and their elevation to the top-four never looked in doubt here.

Manager David Moyes said: “Nobody would have envisaged or mentioned us having a chance of the Champions League last season.

“Can we keep it going? We are going to try and compete with the big teams right until the end."

West Ham’s confidence and momentum was evident from the start, with Lingard and Michail Antonio frequently dragging the Wolves centre-backs out of position.

Rui Patricio had already pushed Antonio’s shot onto the post before West Ham took a sixth-minute lead with a wonderful solo goal from Lingard.

Picking up the ball from just inside his own half, Lingard advanced and with Antonio drawing Conor Coady away from goal, was allowed to run unopposed into the area before placing his shot past the Wolves goalkeeper.

Wolves were struggling to repel the pressure, failing to react quickly to danger, and a second goal was inevitable, with Pablo Fornals finding the corner after another fine piece of skill from Lingard.

Nuno Espirito Santo appeared stunned in his technical area, and must be wondering what will go wrong next.

Wolves are already without talismanic striker Raul Jimenez and have suffered further misfortune with the loss of Jonny, the Spain international, until the end of the year with a knee injury.

West Ham added a third goal shortly before half-time, recovered quickly from the withdrawal of Antonio with a hamstring issue with his replacement, Jarrod Bowen, arrowing in a shot after Lingard was allowed to run from inside his own half and drift past four challenges.

Wolves produced a goal out of nowhere a minute before half-time, after a brilliant run from Adama Traore, with the winger’s cross headed home by Leander Dendoncker.

They did respond and substitute Fabio Silva reduced the deficit in the 69th minute with a fine finish across Lukasz Fabianski.

Dendoncker then skied a shot over from a decent position and for the first time West Ham were wobbling.

There was to be no dramatic finish, though, and Wolves must be desperate for the season to end.

Nuno said: “All the good things we did in attack were taken away by our defending, of course I was angry.

“I think the goals were avoidable and we have to work on that to find solutions. When you don't have the same players everything is not the same and it becomes harder.”

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

Mex Martillo 7:52 Tue Apr 6
Re: Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Love those Guardian match reports, always seem spot on to me and not at all biased, just say it as it was.
happygilmore 4:07 Tue Apr 6

Texas Iron 4:59 Tue Apr 6
Re: Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)

happygilmore 4:07 Tue Apr 6
Re: Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan 2:08 Tue Apr 6
Re: Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)

Thanks Alan 2:08 Tue Apr 6
Re: Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
ted fenton 2:02 Tue Apr 6

ted fenton 2:02 Tue Apr 6
Re: Tuesday newspapers (includes West Ham)
Thanks Alan.

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