Saturday, June 17

Daily WHUFC News - 18th June 2017

FIFA Confederations Cup: Everything you need to know

What is the Confederations Cup, where is it and when is it happening?

Taking place the summer before a FIFA World Cup year, the Confederations Cup
brings together the six winners of the continental competitions across the
world, plus the tournament hosts and previous World Cup winners.

The tournament takes place at four of the venues which Russia will use for
next year's World Cup – Moscow's Spartak Stadium, Sochi, Kazan and Saint
Petersburg, with the Hammers' Jose Fonte featuring for Portugal.

The European champions will take on Russia, New Zealand and Mexico in Group
A, while Germany, Chile, Cameroon and Australia make up Group B.

Russia face New Zealand in the opening game on Saturday, with the final on 2

When are Jose Fonte's games?

Portugal kick-off their campaign against Mexico at 4pm BST on Sunday 18
June. Their second match is against the hosts Russia at 4pm on Wednesday 21
June. Their final group match is against New Zealand on Saturday 24 June,
also at 4pm.

Why isn't Winston Reid playing for New Zealand?

Reid is New Zealand captain and featured for his country at the 2010 FIFA
World Cup. However, he is unable to lead the All Whites in Russia this
summer as he recovers from knee surgery which ended his season a week early.

Reid was playing through the pain towards the end of the 2016/17 campaign
and underwent his surgery in order to return for pre-season – ending his
hopes of turning out in Russia. However, the Hammers defender will hope to
be there next summer at the World Cup, with New Zealand well set to make it
to the qualifier against the South American fifth place team.

What's Jose Fonte's record for Portugal like?

The 33-year-old has enjoyed great success during his international career,
not making his debut until 2014 but hardly suffering a setback since.

At Euro 2016 last summer, he did not start until the last-16 tie against
Croatia, but retained his place in every game since, playing an integral
role as Portugal lifted the title with victory over hosts France in the

He has 22 caps in total for his country and featured in comfortable
victories against Cyprus and Latvia in the last couple of weeks.

Germany are in Russia as the 2014 FIFA World Cup winners

Who are the favourites to win?

Fonte's Portugal are in a three-way tie as favourites to lift the trophy on
2 July, according to Betway. Our principal partners can't split the trio at
13/5 to take the honours.

How can I watch the FIFA Confederations Cup this month?

ITV will be covering the tournament live in the UK, across their ITV1 and
ITV4 channels.

The Jose Fonte column: Why we're giving Ronaldo a hard time

Our Portuguese defender writes exclusively for from Russia, where
he is currently preparing for FIFA's Confederations Cup tournament,
contested by the holders of the six regional international championships,
along with the World Cup holder and a host nation.

Portugal, as Euro 2016 winners last summer, will go up against Mexico, New
Zealand and the hosts Russia in Group A, with the top two teams qualifying
for the semi-finals, against two from Chile, Cameroon, Australia and

Here Jose talks about the build-up to the prestigious tournament, the
challenges of international football at the end of a long season, and the
reaction of the Portugal players to a certain team-mate's new haircut…

Aiming for more silverware in Russia

After beating Latvia in our World Cup qualifier on Friday, we had a couple
of days off over the weekend before meeting up again in preparation for the
Confederation Cup tournament.

Before the first international friendly against Cyprus last week I had a
nice week with my family in the Algarve, which was really nice and restful.
We then had a week's training before beating Cyprus 4-0 and Latvia 3-0, so
the mood among the squad is positive and happy.

On Monday we gathered at our Portugal National Academy, where we train and
prepare for matches. The hotel we stay in is nearby, in a place called
Cascais, which is really nice, with lovely views out to the ocean.

We are very well looked after and enjoy the use of the best facilities, so
it is the perfect environment for us to spend time together as a squad.

On Wednesday we flew to Kazan in Russia, where our opening game against
Mexico will be played on Sunday. We were very warmly welcomed, Kazan is the
third biggest city in Russia and the people here are very nice. The
facilities are good, the food is good, it's quiet and peaceful, so we have
the perfect environment for our preparations.

It will be a tough match on Sunday, Mexico have some very good players, but
we are feeling confident and looking forward to it. Now that we are European
champions, the expectation and responsibility is even higher, everyone
expects to win and to be at our best all the time, competing for trophies.

That is the level we have always aimed for though. Since my first day with
the Portuguese national team, the message has been the same – we must
represent our country in the best possible way, and that means win every
game and give 120% effort at all times.

With the quality that we have in the team, if we can keep that effort at the
highest level and run more than our opponents, then we believe we will be

We did our job in the World Cup qualifier last week, and now we are focused
on trying to win another trophy in Russia.

The Fernando Santos approach

When you are away as a squad for long periods of time, it is important for
the players to stay happy and relaxed. The best way to achieve this is
really just to have some days off every now and then, as we did after the
game against Latvia.

Our manager, Fernando Santos, is very good in that sense, he always tries to
reward us for working hard, and that keeps everyone happy. You can go and
see your family, relax, go to the beach, do whatever you want to do, and it
keeps your mind and body relaxed and fresh.

Training has been a mix of work, but no light sessions to be honest - we
have worked hard. It has been a long season, in fact for the last three
years we have played a lot of football each summer, without much holiday,
but that is our life and we are used to it. We get our rest when we can, but
we have to be ready for the manager and we are working hard because we want
to win this tournament.


Cristiano Ronaldo shows off his new haircut in training for Portugal

Some cutting comments for Cristiano

We are obviously used to spending time together away at tournaments, and it
helps that we have a great bunch of lads and are all very close. Obviously
you have team-mates you spend more time with – I have a good connection with
Cedric Soares, Andre Gomes, Joao Moutinho, Bruno Alves, Pizzi and Adrien –
but the list could go on because they are all my friends and it is a very
good group.

There are a lot of jokers and it is a great atmosphere. Cristiano Ronaldo
got a little bit of stick when he arrived with his new haircut, especially
from Ricardo Queresma. But it's a nice little change for him, and we are
getting used to it now, so as long as he is happy it's all good!

Jose will be back with another exclusive column on next week…

Rich Energy become Official Energy Drink of West Ham United Ladies

The Hammers are delighted to announce that Rich Energy have signed as
Official Energy Drink of West Ham United Ladies.

Rich Energy come on board as the first partners of the Ladies team since
Jack Sullivan took on the role of managing director, signing a long-term
deal to link up with the Club.

Rich Energy is a premium and innovative British energy drink painstakingly
developed and optimised with leading beverage experts.

With the sole objective of creating a peerless, ultra-high quality energy
drink with none of the downsides of the competition, Rich Energy is
available in 6,000 outlets in the UK and 21 countries worldwide.

Company CEO William Storey is a Hammers fan and Jack Sullivan is delighted
to have the brand on board.

West Ham Ladies announce their partnership with Rich Energy

He said: "I'm over the moon that Rich Energy have become the first partner
to get on board of hopefully a long list. They have seen what we're trying
to do with the trajectory of West Ham Ladies and it's so great that a West
Ham fan has decided to join part of the West Ham family and back Ladies'

"We share a focus on elite performance – we're going for the same goal and
being powered by Rich Energy will hopefully see us power up the leagues and
challenge at the very top."

It was a sentiment echoed by Storey, CEO of Rich Energy, who added: "Women's
Football is burgeoning around the world, growing very quickly in the UK and
America. It's fantastic, not only as a spectacle for fans, but also for
women to get involved in sport from school upwards.

"With West Ham being one of the biggest brands in world football, it's a
phenomenal privilege for us to work with such a great business and team.

"I think West Ham Ladies are going to go from strength-to-strength and as
the UK's premium energy drink we're obviously really keen to support elite
performance. There's no better fit than with West Ham Ladies."

West Ham Ladies General Manager Karen Ray said: "For me, having played for
the team and now being General Manager, to see the advancements we're making
is great. Having Jack Sullivan involved as managing director and now with
Rich Energy to back us it can only be good from here.

"We have a five-year plan to become a top-six club in the country and I
believe with the backing of companies such as Rich Energy, we could get
there quicker."

West Ham United Ladies currently have opportunities to become a partner or
patron of the Club, where you will personally make a difference to the
successful development of our ladies team.

Giroud on his way? Maybe, says Wenger
Filed: Saturday, 17th June 2017
By: Staff Writer

Arsene Wenger has suggested that West Ham transfer target Olivier Giroud may
not be an Arsenal player for much longer. The under-fire Arsenal boss, who
was recently awarded a new two-year contract told L'Equipe that the French
international is "not really" part of his plans for the forthcoming 2017/18
season. West Ham have been linked with a move for Giroud in recent weeks and
were named as bookies favourites to sign the 30-year-old yesterday. That
followed recent meetings between the club and Giroud's representatives,
where a potential transfer was discussed. The player has spent the last five
years with the Gunners.

Hammers launch Traore bid
Filed: Friday, 16th June 2017
By: Staff Writer

West Ham are understood to have launched a bid to sign Middlesbrough
midfielder Adama Traore. According to Ken Dyer, the Hammers have opened the
bidding with an £8million offer for the former Barcelona youth star, who has
been relegated with both Aston Villa and Middlesbrough since arriving in
England two years ago. 21-year-old Traore was one of 'Boro's most exciting
players last season, despite his erratic form - which has led to many
supporters questioning whether he would be a good acquisition. The 5'10"
Spaniard moved to England in 2015, spending a year at Villa for whom he made
11 appearances. Last summer he joined the North East club for an undisclosed
fee, going on to make 32 appearances.

West Ham are in pole position to land Sunderland defender Lamine Kone.
The Mirror

Sunderland are demanding around £15million for the 28-year-old centre-back
but the Hammers believe a deal could be agreed at around £10million. Kone
wants out following the Black Cats' relegation to the Championship and the
exodus of their star names. West Brom are also interested, with boss Tony
Pulis priced out of a move for Liverpool defender Mamadou Sakho. Pulis is
lining up potential replacements with Leicester trying to sign £10million
Baggies defender Jonny Evans.
Sunderland are almost certain to take a hit on Kone as Everton had been
prepared to pay them around £18million last summer. Then-boss David Moyes
persuaded him to sign a new deal and commit himself to the club's bid to
stay in the Premier League. Now that the club are down Kone wants to be
allowed to leave.


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