Tuesday, June 6

Daily WHUFC News - 6th June 2017

Rice – I want a West Ham career like Noble

Teenage star Declan Rice wants to follow in the footsteps of West Ham
captain Mark Noble
The defender won the Young Hammer of the Year award after a brilliant debut
season in the first team
The 18-year-old also won promotion as captain of the U23 side

Promising West Ham United centre-back Declan Rice wants to follow in the
footsteps of the likes of Mark Noble and become a Hammers legend at London
Stadium. The Republic of Ireland youth international – like the current West
Ham captain 12 years ago – was this season named the Club's Young Hammer of
the Year after a superb breakthrough campaign. As skipper, Rice guided the
U23 side to Premier League 2 promotion via the play-offs, missing just two
league matches all season, while also featuring on the first team bench as
the season reached its climax. Then, on the final day of the term at
Burnley's Turf Moor, the 18-year-old made his senior debut, replacing
Edimilson Fernandes in the final minutes of Slaven Bilic's outfit's 2-1 win.
The first team bow – as well as the Young Hammer of the Year accolade – was
the icing on the cake for Rice after a marvellous year. "The award just
topped off the season perfectly for me, to be honest," he said. "Then, to go
on and make my debut afterwards was even better. I never thought I would win
that award. "Being Ireland's U17 Player of the Year this year after getting
the Dylan Tombides award the year before – it's been amazing. "Some big
names have won the award before, like Nobes earlier in his career. The guys
who have won it in the past have gone on to have good careers, too, and
Nobes has played 400 games for the Club. "Hopefully I can make my mark in a
similar way to him. I have always wanted my career to be here since joining
from Chelsea. My heart has been with West Ham every day since then, and that
feeling is always growing."

Rice's rise has come about quickly – last month, the teenager trained with
the Republic of Ireland senior squad ahead of their June international
matches. And just last season, the defender was an U18 regular but was
limited to just appearances from the bench for the Development Squad,
managed by Academy Director Terry Westley. "Having mostly played U18s, to
come into the U23s this year as captain and win promotion is incredible,"
the youngster continued. "With the likes of Terry, along with Liam Manning,
Mark Phillips and Steve Potts in the Academy, they push me every day and
want the best for me. "I was a bit nervous going into the U23s. It was
nerve-wracking coming on as a sub last year, trying to show what you can do
in the minutes you get. "This season, it's been totally different. I've been
going into U23 games knowing that I'm going to play well. I think that I
have solved that problem this season – I have achieved good things in the
U23s. "So, obviously we'll see what happens, but it might be my time to go
out on loan next season and have a good challenge while getting senior

If a loan move next season is the next step for Rice, there are plenty of
his teammates he can call upon for advice. Josh Cullen – notably – enjoyed a
superb 2016/17 campaign in League One with Bradford City on loan, starting
regularly in central midfield and helping the Bantams reach the play-off
final at Wembley. "The way Josh has played for the last two years at
Bradford has been unbelievable," said Rice on his compatriot. "He's someone
for everyone in the Academy to look up to. "If I do go out on loan,
hopefully I can make as many appearances and impress as much as Josh has.
"Playing either in the Championship or League One has to be the aim. It
would be a perfect way to gain experience and learn. "That's definitely the
aim if I can't break into the first team on a regular basis."

London Stadium prepares to welcome the world

West Ham United's London Stadium is soon to undergo the temporary
adjustments that will prepare it for the 2017 IAAF World Athletics
Championships taking place this summer.

The finest athletes on the planet will perform at the prestigious global
event, with the World Para Athletics Championships on from July 14 – July
23, followed by the World Athletics Championships from August 4 – August 13,
the highlight of which will be Olympic legends Mo Farah and Usain Bolt
competing for the final time at the swansong of their glittering careers.

What's more, West Ham United's loyal Season Ticket Holders can take
advantage of a fantastic special offer to attend the World Para Athletics
event, with tickets available at just £3.00 for adults and £1.00 for
under-16s, representing a massive 93% discount on the full price. For full
details on how to purchase tickets, click here

For the duration of the IAAF events this summer, London Stadium will become
a 'clean stadium' - a requirement of any venue hosting the IAAF World
Championships under the rules of the competition. This is a unique and
exceptional year that will see a once-in-a-generation occasion taking place
in London.

It is the one and only time that a clean stadium is required and contracted
for an event outside the football season, and has been embraced by West Ham
United ever since signing the concession agreement in 2013, as part of the
stadium's athletics legacy.

A team of specialists will this week begin the task of carefully removing
the Club's giant marquee sign that adorns the roof of London Stadium.

The sign will be stored and guarded 24/7 at a secure compound off-site for
the duration of the IAAF event, before being thoroughly cleaned, serviced
and then reinstalled in its prominent location in time for our first home
match of the 2017/18 Premier League campaign.

West Ham United signage and branding around the stadium will also be placed
in secure storage for the summer period, as London prepares to welcome the
world's elite athletes to the capital.

However, it will be business as usual for West Ham United, with the Stadium
Store and Ticket Office open throughout the summer for Hammers fans, who
will be able to purchase the new replica kits for 2017/18, and staff
continuing to plan ahead for next season at the club offices.

Dan Kemp excited by Toulon Tournament semi-final

Dan Kemp won a penalty as England U20s made it through to the Toulon
Tournament semi-finals
The Dylan Tombides Award nominee was fouled in the 25th minute and Sheffield
Wednesday's George Hirst scored the penalty
England went on beat Japan 2-1 and subsequently topped the group

West Ham winger Dan Kemp played a key role as England U20s topped Group A at
the Toulon Tournament after they beat Japan 2-1 in their final group game.
The 18-year-old was fouled in the penalty area in the 25th minute and George
Hirst stepped up to give England the lead.
Japan equalised through Mizuki Ando in the second half but Chelsea's Martell
Taylor-Crossdale netted another penalty late on to secure England's passage
to the last four. It was Kemp's second start of the tournament so far, after
featuring in the opening victory against Angola, and the wide player was
delighted to be among the thick of the action. "The game was a good test for
us against a very good Japan team," said Kemp. "We are all delighted to win
three out of three games and top the group. "It was good to be involved in
winning the penalty for the first goal. As an attacking player, it is your
main job to score or create scoring chances for your team so I was pleased
to get the penalty."

England are aiming to defend the title they won last year and are still on
course to achieve the feat after maintaining their 100% record in the
tournament so far. Kemp hopes to be involved in the semi-final and believes
he can draw on his knockout football experience to help the Young Lions in
France. He was part of Terry Westley's PL2 side that won both the semi-final
and final to clinch promotion to Premier League 2 Division 1 last month. "I
cannot wait for the semi-final," he continued. "It will be another great
experience for me. All the boys are looking forward to it and we're
confident and ready."

Season Ticket relocation update

With the Season Ticket relocation period now underway, West Ham United would
like to confirm the process for supporters who have requested to relocate
their seat for the 2017/18 season.

With more than 90% of Season Ticket holders renewing before last week's
deadline – and the vast majority wishing to retain their existing seats -
opportunities to relocate will be very limited and are strictly subject to

For renewing Season Ticket Holders, seat relocations will be prioritised by
how early you renewed, which the Ticket Office hold a record of.

As previously explained, there are some priority cases where exceptional
circumstances exist, such as accessibility requirements and a group of
supporters who had to move out of Block 114 in order to increase the size of
the segregation line.

Season Ticket holders requesting to relocate will have received a
notification email of their relocation window, advising when to call the
Ticket Office to discuss their request. When calling, please ensure you have
your client reference number to hand.

The relocation phase will be a busy period for the Club and we would
therefore ask that you only contact us once your window has opened.
Supporters calling earlier will be politely requested to call back at their
designated time.

The majority of available seats in the lower tiers of the East, West and
Bobby Moore stands are single seats, with a limited number of pairs.

If relocating with others, make sure you have to hand all client references,
names, and postcodes within the group – all of whom must have renewed before
May 31. In the interest of fairness, seats cannot be placed on reserve.

If your relocation falls into a different price band, the difference in cost
will either be refunded or required to be paid in full immediately. If you
make a decision to relocate your seat, your existing seat will then be made
available for other supporters.

Once the relocation period has ended on 15 June, the limited number of
available Season Tickets will then go on sale to supporters on the Waiting
List from Friday 16 June.


Good evening everyone.

So that time of year is here once again. Yes, the transfer window is fast
approaching. So we have only just entered June, and we have already been
linked with a number of different players. I am here to give my opinion on
why I think we need quality over quantity, and what players I would bring in
over the summer.

So let's get on with it.

First of all, I just want to say that I do not think we need too many
signings, unlike last summer. I would say we need three of four more players
of good quality in order for us to be a top eight side. We already have a
good spine to our side, with Reid, Obiang and Lanzini being our key players.
If we can get a few players of equal quality, then I am sure we will see
progress in the next few seasons.

Now we have made a brilliant start to the window with the signing of Pablo
Zabaleta on a free transfer. I think he is a better than signing than some
of our fans realise. He obviously fills the right back position, which is
something that we have been crying out for for far too long now. He also
brings leadership and a real winning mentality, which is also something that
we have lacked this season. I am looking forward to seeing him as part of
our defence next season.

The other main area that we need to strengthen is the forwards. Now it is no
secret that we want to sign Manchester City striker Kelechi Iheanacho, and
it is also no secret that we want to sign Chelsea striker Mich Batshuayi. In
my opinion, these two players would be the perfect signings for us. They are
two young, hungry strikers who are looking to prove a point after not
getting much game time at their current clubs. If we manage to sign
Iheanacho on a permanent deal and Batshuayi on a loan deal with a view to
buy him next summer, then I would be a very happy Hammer.

The next area that I feel we need to strengthen is the left wing. We need to
sign a winger who is very direct and has plenty of pace because as we all
know, we have lacked a lot of pace this season. For me, the players we
should be looking at are Adama Traore and Damarai Gray. Now I know that some
people do not rate Traore because he isn't the best player technically, but
the same could be said for Antonio. Antonio isn't the best player
technically, but he has pace to burn and is a fan favourite. Traore also has
pace to burn, and the thought of him and Antonio running down the wings
excites me.

Damarai Gray is my second option. He is another young player with lots of
potential, but yet again he barely gets a chance at his current club. He has
got plenty of pace and is very good technically, but he cannot get a game
over Marc Albrighton. I feel that we should look at him and test the water
with Leicester.

Finally, I think we need to strengthen the goalkeeping position. Now I am a
massive fan of Adrian and I am happy that he will be sticking around, but I
still think we can and need to get better than him. My choice would be Joe
Hart. Despite making some errors in Italy this season, I still think he is
one of the best keepers around on his day. He clearly doesn't have a future
at Manchester City with them having signed a new keeper this week, and I
think we would be silly to not at least try and get him.

As I said before, I truly believe that we are only three or four quality
signings away from being a top eight side, and if we can sign the players
mentioned, then I am sure that we will be up there next season. I hope it is
a successful summer window for the Hammers, and I hope every one has a
brilliant summer themselves.


Hello Hammers. Here is today's lunchtime round up.

Andy Carroll says the West Ham fans showed their power during the 1-0 win
over Tottenham in May. (Standard)

We all know that we are the best fans in the country, when we want to be.
This season we have only shown glimpses of what the atmosphere at the London
Stadium can be like. In my opinion, the atmosphere at the Spurs game is how
the atmosphere should be at every game. If the fans can create that
atmosphere every game, then we will beat a lot of teams at the London

West Ham defender James Collins says he is not considering retirement.
(Tribal Football)

I am glad Ginge isn't retiring just yet, but his West Ham future still
remains unclear. I do hope that he remains with us until he retires, because
he is a hero to this club. In my opinion, he deserves a new contract for his
contribution to the team this season.

The West Ham United sign outside the London Stadium is being dismantled this
week, as the stadium prepares for the IAAF World Championships. (Standard)

Reece Oxford is set to join Borussia Monchengladbach on a season long loan
deal. (The Sun)

This is a very odd rumour, but strangely I think it could work out for
everyone. Recce will gain a lot of experience in a good league and he will
learn a lot from his time there. Ideally, I would like to see Reece stay and
gain experience with us, but that is going to be hard for him with our
current options.

Southampton are in contention to sign West Ham's Robert Snodgrass this
summer. (HITC)

If this is true, then I would consider a swap deal including Dusan Tadic.
Let's be honest, not many people would be sad to see Snodgrass leave, and
Tadic is a level above him. Tadic would be a very good signing for us in my
opinion, and I am interested to see how this one turns out.

West Ham are in pole position to sign Lincoln City defender Sean Raggett.

I do not understand this. I don't see why we would potentially loan Reece
Oxford out and then sign another defender. To me, it makes sense to just
keep Reece and give him a chance, instead of spending more money on another
defender. Raggett may be a good player with lots of potential, but Oxford
has been tipped as the future of English football.

Written by Katie S @flump9

Well the season is over and although most of us probably couldn't wait for
it to end, we are now probably desperate for it to start again. Having had
a little time to reflect on the season as a whole and how each player
performed, got me thinking how I would rank them out of ten and whether I
think they should stay or go. These are my views based upon my personal
feelings and not if we were to buy players in these positions this transfer
window or if anyone would actually make an offer etc.

So here it goes, from 1 to 10:

Enner Valencia – Not played for West Ham, but sell

This is hard for me to judge, as I personally haven't seen many of Everton's
games this season, but he has made 21 appearances and scored 3 goals. I was
quite positive about Enner when he first joined us, but in my mind he just
isn't good enough. There was talk that Everton wanted to sign him
permanently, if this is true and not some sort of joke, then sell him now!

Diafra Sakho – 2 out of 10 = Sell

I didn't even have to think about this answer. I have lost patience with
Sakho, yes he may be injury prone which is awful for any player, but too
much has gone on with him off of the field. Like Carroll, he is never going
to be fit for long and we can't afford to be paying his wages for him to
never play. Sadly though, I can't see anyone buying him!

Håvard Nordtveit – 3 out of 10 = Sell

I felt a little sorry for Nordtveit earlier in the season, fans were very
quick to write him off and felt that it was a bit soon to be so critical.
The low point had to be giving away a penalty to Tottenham in the 90th
minute, after only being on the pitch five minutes. Like quite a few
players this season, Nordtveit was being played out of position though and
was probably unfair to judge. He showed what he was capable of when playing
in his natural position against Everton and was probably man of the match,
but sadly there are too many negatives for me to. I will never forget that
sight of him jogging back watching Coutinho score.

Robert Snodgrass – 3 out of 10 = Sell

He has been a real disappointment for me, I don't know if he just hasn't
settled well but I can't recall any real high points from Snodgrass this
season. He said himself that he has played out of position and struggled
slightly, but I just consider it as a panic buy from Bilic and can't see him
bringing much to the team next season. He has to go.

Ashley Fletcher – 4 out of 10 = Sell/Loan

This will probably be an unpopular decision, but I have chosen to sell
Fletcher. It is hard to judge him as he hasn't been given enough chances
and playing five minutes at the end of a match is difficult for anyone to
prove themselves, however I can't help but feel he isn't the natural goal
scorer that we are so desperately needing. Maybe he needs to get some
experience on loan in the Championship this season and see how he goes

Andy Carroll – 5 out of 10 = Sell

This ranking may seem a little harsh, but I think my patience has finally
run out. There is no doubting his ability and the goal against Palace alone
could have made me rank him much higher, but I cannot keep being positive
about a player who misses half the season. If we had a few other top
strikers, maybe we could put up with it, but we don't. I feel for him but
we have to look at the bigger picture.

Sofiane Feghouli – 5 out of 10 = Sell

This was actually my toughest decision, as I like players that work hard and
give their all. This is exactly what Feghouli does. He has scored four
goals and whenever he plays he gives 100% and tries to create things (which
can't be said for lots of the team), but for me I don't think he is a top
player and would like to see someone else instead.

Cheikhou Kouyaté – 6 out of 10 = Keep

Kouyaté is one of my favourite players, as I believe he is one of the most
consistent every season. The reason his ranking isn't higher, is purely
down to Bilic playing him out of position most of the season, which
obviously is not his fault. He is much better playing in midfield and
hopefully next season this will be his only position. Having said that, I
still think he has had a pretty decent season and would never contemplate
selling him.

Aaron Cresswell – 6 out of 10 = Keep

This is the first season that Cresswell has received some criticism and with
good reason. He was injured for the early part of the season and came back
for the Palace game, where he made a big difference and I thought he was
what we had been missing, unfortunately this didn't continue and Aaron's
season was a bit of a let-down compared to his first couple. Saying all of
that, I highly rate him and I believe he is a fantastic left back that we
will be lucky to keep hold of him for more than a couple of seasons.

Mark Noble (captain) – 6 out of 10 = Keep

Noble is another player that has come under a lot of criticism this season,
it certainly wasn't as good as the previous season, where he had the season
of his career. However, I still think some of the negative comments were a
little over the top. The stat about us not winning without Noble in the
team was quite alarming, (thankfully that ended against Burnley) but also
goes to show what an influence he has on the team, which I think goes
unnoticed. He is a fantastic captain and is a pivotal player. I hope he
spends his whole career with us.

Darren Randolph – 6 out of 10 = Sell

There has been lots of talk of signing another keeper and if that is the
case, for me Randolph has to be the keeper to make way. He had a brilliant
campaign during the euros last year and has made some impressive saves for
us this season, however I think he's lacking some key attributes and I would
like to see someone else come in. If we aren't going to bring in another
keeper, then Randolph is a decent back-up, but I think he will want to be
No1 and can see us selling.

André Ayew – 6 out of 10 = Keep

Hit and miss is how I would sum up Ayew's first season with us, quite
literally! I can't quite believe some of the opportunities he has missed.
He isn't an out and out striker, so I do not think he should be used in this
position, but there is no excuse for some of those misses. Saying all of
that, I still think he will improve next season and be quite an important
player for us. His passion and desire to win against Tottenham, really made
me warm to him and even with those misses he has still scored some crucial
goals for us.

Adrián – 6 out of 10 = Keep

He had a very shaky start to the campaign, but the same could be said for
most of the squad. I believe Bilic was right to drop Adrián, but I felt
some of the negativity towards him was a bit strong. Last season we all
loved him, surely he couldn't fall apart that quickly? I was very pleased
that he finally made it back into the team at the end of the season and I
think it was apparent that the defence felt a lot safer with Adrián between
the sticks. I am pleased that he has signed a contract extension and hoping
he continues the way he finished last season.

Sam Byram – 6 out of 10 = Keep

I was really pleased when Bilic finally decided to play Sam, it meant we
actually had a natural right back. I think people have mixed views on
Byram, I don't think he is the finished article and I think he can be a bit
of a liability sometimes, making rash challenges. In spite of this, I think
overall he did well and the game against Swansea with James Collins
encouraging him was his season highlight. It cannot have been easy for him,
when your manager insists on playing everyone out of position, rather than
use you. We have now signed Zabaleta so he won't be number one choice, but
I think he is a great back-up.

José Fonte – 6 out of 10 = Keep

I think it is fair to say that Fonte didn't start as promisingly as we all
hoped and like many probably came under a bit of criticism. I believe he
improved as the season went on and I think he is a decent player that is
worthwhile keeping. Like Byram he might not be first choice, but we all
know what happens with injuries and he is a solid back-up option.

Angelo Ogbonna – 6 out of 10 = Keep

This is quite difficult to judge as he has been out injured since January
and before that I didn't think he was having a great season. However, Bilic
revealed that he had in fact been injured all season and continued to play
until we signed a replacement, even when he was due to have an operation.
It was great to see him return against Burnley and play an impressive 90
minutes after being out for four months. I rate Ogbonna and look forward to
seeing him play next season fully fit.

Edimilson Fernandes – 7 out of 10 = Keep

Fernandes won Signing of the Season and I would say that this was well
deserved. He has consistently performed when called upon and scoring the
winning goal against Chelsea in the EFL Cup was a fantastic moment for him.
At 21 years of age, he has shown a lot of maturity and impressed enormously.
I think he is one for the future and we need to keep hold of him.

James Collins – 8 out of 10 = Keep

What can I say about Ginge? He epitomises leadership and passion, he is an
old-school player and I love that about him. As I mentioned earlier,
Collins' passion and encouragement for Sam Byram really was instrumental in
Sam's performance against Swansea and that is priceless. There has been
talk of other clubs being interested in him, which is understandable, but I
really hope he stays as he still has a lot to offer the team, squad and club
as a whole.

Arthur Masuaku – 8 out of 10 = Keep

Now this ranking is probably a little high, as he has not made many
appearances this season, however, I couldn't ignore how remarkable those
performances were. I didn't understand why so many fans thought he was
great straight away, I thought he was brilliant going forward but lacked
defensive skills. I was completely wrong, the latter part of the season he
showed exactly what he was capable of and I was gutted that he ended up not
playing the remainder of the season. It will be tough to pick between him
and Cresswell next season, but what a great dilemma to have.

Michail Antonio – 9 out of 10 = Keep

The fans Hammer of the Year Michail Antonio, was always going to be ranked
high, I don't think it is one that many people would dispute. If I am
honest, I don't think he had as an impressive season as his first season
with us, but that is probably me being a little harsh and actually I don't
think any player has played as well this season. He is our top goal scorer
and without him, there is no doubt we would have been in real relegation
battle. I love watching him, although he does sometimes look a little
clumsy, he is capable of creating something and his desire is fantastic to

Pedro Obiang – 9 out of 10 = Keep

What an outstanding season Pedro had, he has been immense. My man of the
match on many occasions this season, which is a real turnaround from last
season, when many fans would not have been cared if he was sold in the
summer. The stats speak for themselves and I really hope (I am confident)
he continues the impressive form after his injury.

Winston Reid (vice-captain) – 9 out of 10 = Keep

In the same way I didn't have to think about Sakho, I didn't have to think
about this either. There is no way I would be choose to sell Winston. Once
again, Reid has had another solid season and he really makes a big
difference to our defence. He was my pick for Hammer of the Year!

Manuel Lanzini – 9 out of 10 = Keep

I said last season that I thought Lanzini was creatively a better player
than Payet and since Payet's departure he has really proved himself. He
started the season off a little slow, almost in Payet's shadow, but he has
flourished since then and just gone from strength to strength. I pray we
keep hold of Manu, as I regard him as our key player that is also incredibly
popular with his teammates.

These are all my personal views and I know that even my family members don't
agree, but what do you think? Would you agree with my rankings or is
someone completely out of place in your mind? Let me know, @flump9 on

Young Hammer stars in England success
Filed: Monday, 5th June 2017
By: Staff Writer

Academy star Dan Kemp was one of England's heroes in Toulon this afternoon
as the Under 21s made it through to the semi finals of the Toulon

Kemp, part of a scratch squad featuring Under 18, Under 19 and Under 20
internationals was involved earlier today as Neil Dewsnip's side beat Japan
2-1 to end thee group phase with a perfect record of played three, won

And that means England's youngsters - who won the Toulon tournament last
year for the first time since the mid-1990s - are through to Thursday's semi

"The game was a good test for us against a very good Japan team," Kemp told
whufc.com. "We are all delighted to win three out of three games and top the
group. As an attacking player, it is your main job to score or create
scoring chances for your team so it was good to be involved in winning the
penalty for the first goal. "

Manger Dewsnip added: "'When we first met up and had so many new faces who
didn't know each other, if you'd said we'd win all three group games at a
prestigious tournament such as Toulon I'd've been cynical. But they've
played three, won three.

"We made a lot of changes so we didn't have the fluency we had in the first
two matches. But they showed a different kind of spirit, something I think
is traditionally English: they refused to lose and came out the other side
and I think that's just as important sometimes."

* Meanwhile, over in Korea, England's Under 20s marched through to the semi
finals of the Under 20s World Cup tournament courtesy of a 1-0 win over
Mexico, thanks to Dominic Solanke's second-half goal.

And that despite ending the game with ten men, after Tottenham youngster
Josh Onomah was dismissed for a second bookable offence.

27 years and out
Filed: Monday, 5th June 2017
By: Neil Willis

First and foremost, I would like to explain that I'm not a fairweather
supporter who throws his toys out of the pram when things don't go West
Ham's way. I have experienced many highs and even more lows since my first
game on New Year's Day 1983, when a certain Tony Cottee scored.

Anyway, to get back on track, the question posed on Twitter by @kumbdotcom
was: "What is it about the OS that made you not renew after 27 years as a
season ticket holder?"

I would like it to be know that from the start I was against any move from
Upton Park (sorry it will always be that to me and not the Boleyn) as it was
home and was where my Dad started my football education of pain and
suffering. However, following the truly magnificent experience of
London2012, I foolishly changed my views and backed the plan.

I suppose I might have been drawn into what the board was promising us ie. a
state of the art footballing arena; no more standing outside in the rain
waiting to get onto the platform; a new dawn for the club; a visual wrap
going around the arena; an amazing atmosphere; a ground to be proud of; easy
access to all amenities outside the ground/surrounding area etc. I could go
on and on.

The last game at Upton Park came and went and i was actually looking forward
to stepping foot in the new home of West Ham Utd London. When I stepped into
the arena it was one of those "wow!" moments, like when I entered Cardiff
and Wembley stadiums for the first time.

Then i looked down to see the gaping space between the stands and the pitch
- although my seat is ok, a Band 4 which my friends reluctantly agree it's
better than their Band 1 seats. It's so vast I swear I actually saw a mass
migration of wilderbeast at one game.

This has to have an impact on the players, especially coming from such a
close-knit ground where in the good old days the opposition would be pulled
into the crowd when taking a throw in. Unfortunately this will not change
for one simple reason - it is not a football stadium.

It made me laugh when the Board made a major fuss about the arena being
nominated as Stadium of the Year. This was followed by loads of told-you-so
tweets and other messages on social media. Though there was one key word
missing - "FOOTBALL" stadium.

There has been more atmosphere in the Emirates - and as you know, that's
saying something. Unfortunately this has not improved during the whole
season, singing Bubbles at the start of the game doesn't count. Though im
reliably informed that there was a good atmosphere at the Spurs game.

It soon became apparent that the club was doing everything on the cheap. For
example my friend tried to get a hot dog, only to be told "we have no hot
dog rolls, do you still want it?" Who on earth buys more dogs than rolls?

Then there were the obvious security issues. This was highlighted by the
mindless "buy one, get two free" Founders system, where non fans would get
priority over real fans. This was highlighted by the fact that these
founders either hadn't attended a match before or hadn't for some time.

The reason behind is simple... they acted like a scene out of The Firm (not
the Tom Cruise film, but the Gary Oldman one). It was then I started to feel
that this was not the club it once was. This then continued and I stopped

I understand that the club needed to move on to grow. But is has been
fuelled by lies. Can't extend Upton Park because of the bus garage? Fib. The
infrastructure will be second to none? A bigger fib as it's worse than Upton
Park. The digital wrap will go around the whole ground? What a whopper. Fans
consulted on the new badge? I must have missed that one as well.

I will always be a fan of WHU - not WHU London - but no longer class myself
as a supporter and I'm looking forward spending my Saturdays watching a bit
of non-league football to try and rekindle my love for the game (and perhaps
taking up the occasional betfair free bet offer).

One thing is for certain - I will not be stepping foot inside the
multi-purpose sporting arena again.

Please note that the opinions expressed in this article are those of the
author and do not necessarily represent the views of, nor should be
attributed to, KUMB.com.

Randolph a winner despite blunder
Filed: Monday, 5th June 2017
By: Staff Writer

West Ham United's reserve goalkeeper Darren Randolph was on the winning side
last night as the Republic of Ireland beat Uruguay 3-1 in Dublin.

However the Hammers 'keeper was heavily criticised for making an error that
led to the South Americans' equaliser, after he failed to deal with a deep

Jonathan Walters put the hosts ahead with 28 minutes on the clock, only for
the visitors to restore parity ten minutes later after Randolph came out to
meet a free kick but was beaten to the ball by Jose Gimenez.

Fortunately Randolph's error failed to prove too costly, as goals from Cyrus
Christie and James McClean ensured the Republic ran out 3-1 winners ahead of
next week's World CUp qualifier against Austria.

West Ham join Steve Mounie transfer race with Watford and West Brom
The 22-year-old Benin international forward scored 14 goals for French side
Montpellier this past season
The Mirror
22:30, 5 JUN 2017

West Ham are the latest Premier League club chasing £13million Montpellier
forward Steve Mounie. The 22-year-old Benin international, who scored 14
goals last season, is also a target for Watford boss Marco Silva and Tony
Pulis at West Brom . The Hornets are particularly interested, with M'Baye
Niang insistent that he wants to return to parent club AC Milan following
his loan spell at Vicarage Road.


Defensively, West Ham were poor this past season and leaked too many goals
and there's no doubt that Slaven Bilic should look to improve this area of
the pitch. The Hammers have been one of a number of Premier League and
Football League clubs looking to sign highly-rated Lincoln City centre-back
Sean Raggett this summer. According to the Express, West Ham are in pole
position to land the 23-year-old defender who caught the eye for the Imps
this season as they secured promotion back to the Football League and
reached the FA Cup quarter-final. West Ham have already seen a £125,000
offer turned down by the League Two outfit for their star defender while
both Peterborough and Oxford United have had bids in the region of £250,000
rejected. Raggett has a release clause in his contract which stands at
£350,000 which would need to be met in full before Lincoln would allow him
to leave the club this summer. Both Norwich and West Brom are also strongly
considering bids for the defender who is seen as a signing for the future.

West Ham wonderkid hints at loan move away after David Gold's recent
The Hammers defender has had an impressive rise through the ranks
Football London
12:30, 5 JUN 2017

Declan Rice has said that he is open to a loan move away from West Ham for
the upcoming season if it were to help his development.
The youngster has enjoyed a seriously impressive rise through the ranks with
the Hammers - being named the club's Young Hammer of the Year after a
briilliant campaign. The 18-year-old, who made his senior debut against
Burnley at Turf Moor last month, has admitted that his confidence has taken
a massive boost this season - and that he would be open to leaving on loan.
He told the West Ham official website: "I was a bit nervous going into the
U23s. It was nerve-wracking coming on as a sub last year, trying to show
what you can do in the minutes you get. "This season, it's been totally
different. I've been going into U23 games knowing that I'm going to play
well. I think that I have solved that problem this season – I have achieved
good things in the U23s. "So, obviously we'll see what happens, but it might
be my time to go out on loan next season and have a good challenge while
getting senior experience."

Rice has also been talking about the awards that his incredible season has
earned him - and stated that he would love to follow in Mark Noble's
footsteps at West Ham United. "Being Ireland's U17 Player of the Year this
year after getting the Dylan Tombides award the year before – it's been
amazing," Rice added. "Some big names have won the award before, like Nobes
earlier in his career. The guys who have won it in the past have gone on to
have good careers, too, and Nobes has played 400 games for the Club.
"Hopefully I can make my mark in a similar way to him. I have always wanted
my career to be here since joining from Chelsea. My heart has been with West
Ham every day since then, and that feeling is always growing."

Southampton in contention for West Ham's Robert Snodgrass
Shane Callaghan

Southampton are seemingly in contention to sign the West Ham United man,
according to the bookies. According to Ladbrokes, Southampton are among
those in contention to sign West Ham United midfielder Robert Snodgrass. The
popular bookmaker has installed Southampton as 7/1 third favourites to bring
the Scotland international to the South Coast this summer. Claude Puel's
side have the same odds as Stoke City, while Brighton and Hove Albion (5/2)
and West Bromwich Albion (5/1) are first and second favourites. The
29-year-old has had a tough time of it in recent months after sealing a £10
million move to West Ham back in January. But the former Hull City man,
brought in to replace Dimitri Payet, has struggled to justify such a
transfer fee, failing to score in any of his 15 Premier League appearances
for the Hammers - eight of which were from the start.
It certainly seems like the Irons will cut their losses and offload the
ex-Leeds star but it remains to be seen where he will end up.
Southampton could be a good move for him if he can relocate the spark and
energy which secured him a big-money switch to the London outfit in the
first place.

West Ham sign being dismantled as London Stadium prepares for IAAF World
Evening Standard

The giant West Ham sign on top of the London Stadium is being dismantled
this week as the venue is re-converted to athletics in time for the IAAF
World Championships in August. Work commenced today to take down the sign.
It will be stored along with other branding and signage, before being
re-installed after the World Athletics Championships which finish on 13
August, a day after the start of the new Premier League season.
West Ham meanwhile, are set to play their first three matches away from
home, while the stadium is returned to its former condition, including the
re-erection of temporary seating over the athletics track. The one-off
obligation to have a 'clean stadium', both for the World Para Athletics
Championships from July 23-14 and the World Athletics Championships from
August 4 -13, was part of the concession agreement in 2013 to embrace the
stadium's athletics legacy following the Olympic Games there. The club's
store and ticket office will however remain open throughout the summer.

West Ham United should keep Havard Nordtveit
Shane Callaghan

The West Ham United man is linked with a return to Germany, but Slaven Bilic
should keep him. Kicker reported at the weekend that three Bundesliga clubs
are willing to sign West Ham United's Havard Nordtveit. According to the
German outlet, Hoffenheim, Bayer Leverkusen and Wolfsburg are interested in
signing the Norwegian midfielder, who spent five successful years with
Borussia Monchengladbach prior to joining the Hammers for free last summer.
Hoffenheim, in particular, are very much a club on the up after qualifying
for the Champions League and if they're genuinely interested then perhaps it
is the wake-up call that Slaven Bilic needs. They enter into the preliminary
stages, where a huge financial bonus awaits if they reach the group stages.
If Nordtveit is on their radar then the former Besiktas coach must wonder if
he is missing something.
The 26-year-old is not a hugely popular figure among West Ham fans following
a very unspectacular first season with the Londoners. In fact, many
supporters struggle to forgive him after conceding a last-minute penalty in
the 3-2 defeat away to Tottenham in the first half of the campaign, after
coming on as a substitute. But the fact of the matter is that the former
Arsenal youth got very few chances to impress in defensive midfield.
Instead, Bilic used him as a makeshift right-back and he admittedly did not
cover himself in glory in what was clearly an uncomfortable role for him.
With Pedro Obiang impressing in central midfield, it is hard to blame Bilic
for not using him there, but The Mirror reported at the weekend that Everton
are keen on bringing in the Spaniard - a potential departure which could
pave the way for Nordtveit to stake a claim as the Irons' anchorman. He has
not been given a fair crack of the whip in London and it would be a shame
for the Croat to sell him without giving the Norway international a platform
in which to showcase his talent, because there is clearly something there.
With over 150 Bundesliga appearances, Nordtveit, who left Monchengladbach as
captain and is one of the few West Ham men to hold Champions League
experience, is obviously a talented footballer and Bilic can't sell him
until he knows for certain that he isn't good enough.

Having also been a free transfer, the Hammers have very little to lose by
keeping him, but a lot to potentially gain - if he is given a fair chance.

Three clubs want West Ham United's Havard Nordtveit
Shane Callaghan

Havard Nordtveit struggled for West Ham United last term. According to
German outlet Kicker, three Bundesliga clubs are willing to offer Havard
Nordtveit a way out of West Ham United. The 26-year-old joined West Ham on a
Bosman last summer after his contract with Borussia Monchengladbach expired
but, despite being a very promising addition, failed to impress in his first
season under Slaven Bilic.
The Norwegian looked a fine talent at Gladbach, but Bilic played the
defensive midfielder - who can also operate in central defence - at
right-back for much of last season and it did very little for the ex-Arsenal
man. And according to Kicker, Hoffenheim, Wolfsburg and Bayer Leverkusen are
willing to take him back to Germany this summer. It would be harsh to label
Nordtveit a failure based on last season, and many West Ham fans might
prefer if he was given one more campaign in his preferred position before
casting a judgement on him. He enjoyed six fruitful years at Monchengladbach
and perhaps there is enough talent there to justify another season with the

West Ham to make move for out-of-contract Bundesliga star - report
The Hammers are reportedlyinterested in the winger
Football London
05:30, 5 JUN 2017

Reports suggest that West Ham could be set to make a move for Darmstadt
winger Marcel Heller ahead of the new Premier League season.
The player is out of contract with the German side following their
relegation from the Bundesliga and a number of clubs are reportedly keeping
tabs on Heller. Burnley, Antalyaspor and MLS side San Jose Earthquakes have
all been linked with a move for the German who looks increasingly likely to
move abroad. The 31-year-old, who can also play at left-back, has never
represented his country, although he has lined up alongside the likes of
Manuel Neuer, Jerome Boateng, Toni Kroos and Mesut Ozil for the Under-21
side between 2007 and 2009. Heller, who won two consecutive promotions with
Darmstadt, played 34 games in all competitions last season and netted four
goals for Die Lilien.


West Ham are reportedly lining up a summer move for Tigres winger Jurgen
Damm, and have submitted a bid already. According to Liga MX based website
Univision, the Hammers have already made their move to sign the highly-rated
wide man and are keen to bolster their attacking options when the window
opens. It's claimed in the report that Slaven Bilic has lodged an offer
worth just £4 million, with the Croatian manager keen to land himself a
bargain to kick-start his side's summer spending. Damm has been a prominent
figure in Liga MX for some time now and has earned himself a reputation in
Mexico for his technical ability, with his pace and trickery causing
problems for Tigres' opposition. West Ham have lacked attacking flair
recently and would certainly benefit from a more unpredictable option on the
flanks. They'll be hoping to secure a move for the 24-year-old this summer.

Why On Earth Would Hammers Sell Pedro Obiang?
Submitted by nevillenixon on Sun, 04/06/2017 - 20:55

'Cash rich' Everton are reportedly sniffing around for Pedro Obiang,
apparently they are not alone with AC Milan and Sevilla also interested in
luring the combative midfielder and defender to their clubs. Obiang has two
years left on his contract following his £4.3 Million transfer from
Sampdoria. Initially Obiang found himself more often as a squad player or a
bench warmer, but more recently became a permanent fixture in the starting
line up. Everton boss Ronald Koeman wants Obiang as a replacement for James
McCarthy and to provide support for Idrissa Gueye. 25 year old Obiang is in
his prime and although offers in excess of £15 Million have been mooted why
on earth would West Ham take the money in order to make a £10 Million profit
when they would then have to replace him with an insanely new money player?
Make no mistake, player values are going to sky rocket because of all the
extra TV money that will be swilling around, finding a player on a par to
Obiang would probably cost £25 Million, so once again why sell? It is not as
if the club needs the money!
Pedro Obiang finished runner up to Michail Antonio in this season's Hammer
of the Year award and his form did not go unnoticed on Merseyside or in
Italy and Obiang's homeland, but more importantly it did not go unnoticed at
The London Stadium by his manger Slaven Billic. - Ed



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