Sunday, August 13

Daily WHUFC News - 13th August 2017

Fonte: We're not intimidated by a trip to Manchester United

Jose Fonte is excited by the prospect of seeing West Ham United's new signings in action at Old Trafford on Sunday.

The Euro 2016 champion knows a thing or two about titles and believes Chicharito, Marko Arnautovic, Joe Hart and Pablo Zabaleta will all bring a winning mentality to Slaven Bilic's side.

The Hammers kick-off the 2017/18 Premier League season at Manchester United looking to follow in the footsteps of Burnley and Watford, both of whom earned positive results against top four contenders on Saturday.

"It's been amazing," said Fonte, when asked to assess the Club's summer recruitment. "I think the Club has done a fantastic job, bring in this quality, this type of player.

"We should be excited, the players are excited, there's a buzz around the training ground, I know the fans are excited – they should be.

"We're looking forward to the season because it could be a great one. I'm sure, together with the fans, the staff and the players, we can achieve something great this year and it's up to us to work hard and to believe that we can be successful.

"When you bring in players who have won trophies, we have five, six, seven, eight players now who have won stuff, we all want to get them trophies. We are winners, everyone here wants to win.

"We're not here to achieve safety or to just have an average season, we want to win and that's how it has to be. I'm sure that the fans can be positive and we will be giving 120 per cent this year.

"We have a great mixture of experience and young players, so we've got everything you need to be successful. Everyone in the club is excited, we're working hard and we just want the season to start and to start winning some games."

On Hernandez, whose Mexico side Fonte's Portugal faced at the recent FIFA Confederations Cup, the centre-back could hardly contain his excitement.

"You can see it in training, he is happy, he is so energetic, you can see that he is willing and eager to play because he is back in the Premier League," said the 33-year-old. "You can see the personality that he brings to the team and the energy, so he was a great addition along with the others that came that give us great experience."

Fonte also praised Zabaleta's 'experience, stability, calm and knowledge of the various situations of the game' and Arnautovic's 'great talent' which 'can change games'.

While the new No4 is right to be enthused by West Ham's new-look side, he knows they will need to be at the very top of their game to defeat a Manchester United team managed by compatriot Jose Mourinho.

"It's going to be tough," he observed. "The quality that Manchester United have, the great manager they have, it's going to be tough but we have been preparing all week, we're excited, were eager to play that game, to see where we are.

"Obviously were still missing a few players but that shows the strength of the squad – although we're missing some players we still have the quality to go there and do something good.

"We have enough experience in the team to not be intimidated anywhere, we relish this kind of atmosphere to compete against the best. For us it's just another game, a game we look forward to – these are the kind of games players want to play."

Sunday's game kicks-off at 4pm and will be broadcast live in the UK by Sky Sports Premier League and Sky Sports Main Event from 3.30pm.

Slaven Bilic Column: We are optimistic for Old Trafford test

The Hammers boss writes his exclusive new pre-match weekly column for ahead of Sunday's 2017/18 Premier League opener against Manchester United at Old Trafford…

For a manager, there is always a unique and special feeling before the first Premier League game of the new season. It is the one time of the year when everything is in front of you, on a blank canvas, and everyone starts level.

We are all optimistic, and we have good reason to be so. We have been training well, we have kept the players at the Club that we wanted to keep, and we added to our squad some real quality.

We also learned a lot from last season that I believe will be of help to us in this campaign. And I said that a few times last year. That pressure and those difficult situations, which makes you stronger as an individual and, more importantly as a team.

So we are confident of a good season. We have big plans, big expectations, and we want to achieve our targets.

This is the start of my third season as manager, and our opening matches in those three years have been Arsenal away, Chelsea away and Manchester United away – I think I must have done something to upset the fixture computer!

Seriously, though, we have to relish these big occasions against big teams. You can say 'we have to play them at some stage so why not play them now'. We beat Arsenal two years ago and were very close to getting a draw at Chelsea last year, so we do not approach this game with fear.

United will be a big test for us. They have brought Lukaku in, but that will not change their style – Mourinho has brought in players to fit his style and his shape…only better than what they had.

But we can also say that we are stronger. We have managed to sign the targets first on our list this summer – players with a winning mentality and winning experience, who are still hungry and have something to prove.

Their presence in the dressing-room and on the pitch can already be felt, but we still have to give them time to reach their peak and to gel into the team, so we know that once again the first requirement on Sunday is to be solid, to work hard as a team and to fight for every ball.

It is a process, and you don't expect your team to be at their very best – in terms of rhythm and consistency – in the first match. But there is no getting away from the excitement that surrounds the opening game and the players feel that too – they can't wait for it and they are fully motivated.

Look at Arsenal against Leicester last night – there is no playing at 60% and easing yourself into it, this is the Premier League and it is 100% from the very start.

So we have to be ready, and I am sure we will be. I know our fans will be – they will travel up in their numbers as always, and we will look up at that corner at Old Trafford and gain strength from them

Michail Antonio passes comeback with flying colours!

There was just one minute on the clock in Friday night's Premier League 2 season-opener against Everton when Michail Antonio was presented with his first competitive touch of a ball in more than four months.

Latching on to a defensive clearance midway inside his own half, the reigning Hammer of the Year had the simple option of checking back and laying off a safe, short pass to a team-mate. However, that idea quickly evaporated.

Instead, the 27-year-old pushed the ball beyond England Under-20 World Cup-winning right-back Jonjoe Kenny, opened his legs, and powered through a full 70-yard sprint before whipping in a dangerous cross that was inches away from finding the head of Toni Martinez.

For Antonio, it was immediate proof that his recovery is on perfect track and a first team return is just around the corner.

"I thought I might as well test it out straight away!" smiled the popular winger, who has spent the summer undergoing gruelling rehabilitation work following the hamstring injury he suffered in the 1-0 victory over Swansea City at London Stadium back on April 8.

A 70-minute run-out for Terry Westley's side in a competitive and hard-fought 0-0 draw at Dagenham and Redbridge provided the ideal test for Antonio, whose attitude and commitment was as impressive as his physical condition.

"It felt amazing to be back," he added. "It was a great game, both teams went out to win it, and I really enjoyed being involved in it.

"It's been four months since the injury and I have really missed that feeling. It was always the plan to play 70 minutes in a PL2 game before returning to the first team and it has gone as I hoped.

"Of course I feel tired but that is only to be expected after the first game back, and the main thing is that the power and strength was there."

With another full week of training now ahead of him, the hope is that Antonio will be ready to join the squad for the trip to his former club Southampton next week.

"I would say I am at 95% now in terms of speed and power," he said. "And the only way to get to 100% is to be involved in matches and those duels with opponents where you give everything you have.

"It's been a long time but I feel really good now and can't wait to get back."

Betway Insider's View of the Opposition: Man Utd

West Ham's first game of the 2017/18 Premier League season offers a couple of tempting narratives involving the club's new additions.

Joe Hart and Pablo Zabaleta have been brought in to bolster the Hammers' defence, two players who won 11 major trophies between them while turning out for Manchester United's closest rivals, Manchester City.

Both Hart and Zabaleta boast impressive head-to-head records against Sunday's opponents, too.

Between 2010 and 2017 one of or both players featured in 14 league outings against United, a sequence that yielded eight wins and three draws for City.

Old Trafford was never a place the duo feared, either, with the Citizens winning four and losing just two of their seven trips to the stadium during that time.

You can be sure, therefore, that Hart nor Zabaleta will be overwhelmed by getting their West Ham careers under way at their old neighbours' stomping ground.

Neither will Javier Hernandez, who is poised to make his competitive Hammers debut at the ground he affectionately refers to as "my old house".

It's easy to see why he's fond of the place: Chicharito scored 28 times there while playing for the Red Devils, before plundering 36 goals in two seasons at Bayer Leverkusen.

The striker can always be relied upon to pop up with a crucial goal, and it would be no surprise to see him do so in the claret and blue on Sunday.

It helps that Jose Mourinho's side are not especially settled in defence.

European suspensions to Eric Bailly and Phil Jones forced the Portuguese to mix and match his centre-backs throughout pre-season, while he has also experimented with both three and four at the back.

So, with the help of their new recruits – which also include Marko Arnautovic – West Ham are capable of both breaching and keeping out the home side.

The Hammers, of course, were one of nine teams to hold the Red Devils at Old Trafford last season, recording a well-earned 1-1 draw in November.

A similar performance and score-line would represent a fine start to the new campaign for Slaven Bilic's men.

Recommended bets


Under 2.5 goals

Javier Hernandez first West Ham goalscorer

West Ham U18s' season opener ends in defeat at Brighton

West Ham United's U18s new league campaign opened with defeat as the Irons fell to a 3-1 loss at Brighton and Hove Albion.

Confusion and bad fortune for the back-line allowed the home side to storm into an early lead with Brighton two goals ahead within 15 minutes.

Korrey Henry gave West Ham hope early in the second period with a headed finish, having hit the woodwork just before the break.

But defeat for the Irons was secured in the 79th minute as Brighton netted their third.

It took the home side just nine minutes to open the scoring as a lapse in concentration from the West Ham defence allowed Brighton defender Ben Clark-Eden to head home from a corner.

Albion's second was in the net just six minutes later. A commendable run from Jeremy Ngakia unfortunately left the defensive flank exposed on the counter, from which Brighton capitalised with a quick-move and low finish by winger Isaac Hutchinson.

The second conceded effort sparked the Hammers into life and saw the away side grow in confidence with the ball. Bernardo Rosa in particular looked lively, seeing a shot go out for a corner and sending through Sean Adarkwa for an opportunity.

West Ham's best chance of the first half came just a moment before half-time as Henry struck a shot from distance, which pinged back into play off the base of the far post.

The full-backs continued to offer an attacking outlet on the flanks with Reece Hannam playing in a tasty low cross early in the second half.

And it was from a Hannam cross that West Ham eventually broke through. Henry found the net with a flicked header in the 54th minute.

Rosaire Longelo teased in a tasty effort after great work on the wing not long after as the Hammers pressed for an equaliser. Excellent work from the no.11 also set up Rosa for an effort, which bobbled agonisingly wide of the goal.

Despite enjoying the better play in the second period the Hammers struggled to find a second and were made to pay on the counter 11 minutes from full-time. Brighton forward Danny Cashman found the net after a well-played pass and run into the area.

West Ham United U18s coach Mark Phillips said after the contest: "It was a classical game of two halves.

"The first 25 minutes they completely dominated. Brighton started like they had spent the summer waiting to come and play football and we started off like a cricket team.

Then it became an even game. We completely dominated the first half an hour of the second half. I feel they scored completely against the run of play in the second period."

West Ham: Matrevics; Ngakia, Mingi, Wells, Hannam; Henry, Belic (Costinantinou 69'), Hamilton (E. Longelo 86'), Rosa, R.Longelo; Adarkwa

Subs: Forde, Greenidge, E.Longelo, Constantinou

Goals: Henry

'Ensure Lukaku is locked out': The vital facts ahead of Man Utd v West Ham

The start of West Ham's season is just around the corner as Slaven Bilic's side prepare to take on Jose Mourinho's Manchester United.

The Red Devils won't be an easy test for an opening fixture but former Hammers midfielder and current Under-16s manager Jack Collison has revealed how the Irons can leave Old Trafford with a result this Sunday – and we've got the statistics to prove it!

'Ensure Lukaku is locked out'

Romelu Lukaku, Manchester United's newest striker, boasted a very impressive goalscoring record against West Ham until recently. A run of goals in nine consecutive games against the Hammers while with Everton can't be considered anything less than phenomenal, with even the most optimistic of supporters coming to expect a finish from the Belgian when the Club played the Toffees.

"Lukaku has made his big money move and will be looking to start the season fast," Collison said. "I'm sure he's confident after getting a few goals in pre-season and in the UEFA Super Cup so it's going to be essential that the central-defenders are on top of their game and get physical with him."

A heroic effort from West Ham's defence – led by Winston Reid – the last time Lukaku played the Club ensured the forward and his former side Everton left the London Stadium with just a point in a 0-0 draw back in April. It was the first time in ten matches that Lukaku did not score against the Hammers.

Having seen the Irons stop Lukaku last time Collison believes they key to West Ham doing so again at Old Trafford is the whole team taking responsibility for halting the attacker.

"The midfielders also get around him to try and keep him out," he added. "It's important we stop balls into his feet so the midfielders need to be in front, screening passes. Everyone is aware of Lukaku's pace in-behind so it's essential that, if Joe Hart's in goal, his start position is high for any balls over the top, and the defence are ready to meet the challenge head on."

'Grab the game with an early goal'

It's the simplest equation in football – goals win you games.

While recent results away to United haven't been particularly memorable the Hammers do boast a decent goal record at Old Trafford. West Ham have scored in five of their last six matches against United away, with the one exception coming in December 2015.

Interestingly three of those goals have come in the first half - with Diafra Sakho scoring in just the second minute at Old Trafford last season - and Collison reckons an early finish will be the best way to install confidence into the team.

"It's important to see how the game opens. It's the first game of the season so both teams will probably be a little nervy. The best way to settle the nerves is to really go for it, try and get an early goal and something to hang on to."

The former midfielder has warned however that leaving Old Trafford with all three points will likely require more than one West Ham goal on Sunday.

He added: "Any goal at Old Trafford will be important but if you score one you're probably going to have to score two or three to win the match. It's not often United go a game without scoring."

'West Ham's set-piece prowess could prove essential'

Claiming a win on Sunday is not an easy prospect for Slaven Bilic's side with Manchester United last season conceding just 12 Premier League goals at home.

A way through Jose Mourinho's well-drilled defence, according to Collison, could be found in a well-taken set-piece.

"I remember playing under Sam Allardyce and how much he valued set-pieces," said Collison: "It's a great opportunity to try and get the ball into a dangerous area. West Ham are very fortunate they've got some quality players who can deliver good balls into dangerous areas and a lot of physical players to go and attack it."

JC's analysis of West Ham's set-pieces has a statistical foundation too. The Irons scored 12 goals from set-pieces away from home last season, the joint-most of any side in the Premier League.

Collison believes the added threat of the centre-backs at corners and free-kicks gives the Irons an additional advantage and rightly suggests that the Irons do often rely on a set-piece to score against the Red Devils.

"It seems West Ham defenders enjoy scoring against United," Collison added.

"Reid has scored a couple in his time. I remember Anton Ferdinand and Matthew Upson scoring big goals as well. It appears quite often a big, important goal against United does come from a set-piece."

Set-piece opportunities shouldn't be scarce on Sunday with United committing the second-most fouls in the Premier League last campaign. Their 493 was only topped by Watford, who recorded 510 fouls committed.

"United are a physical team. Players like Fellaini like to get their foot in. Pogba is quite similar. We're fortunate we've got bright players and tricky midfielders who like to get at people and make things happen."

'Don't compromise on Bilic's game plan'

Traditionally Jose Mourinho teams are compact, tight and defensively solid, and this Manchester United side is proving to be no exception.

Last season the Red Devils made the fewest defensive errors in the Premier League, registering just eight throughout the entire season.

"It's always tricky to break down United," Collison admits: "Old Trafford is a tough place to go. Often you find that United are happy to let you have the ball as long as you're not hurting them."

Following the plan set out by manager Bilic to the letter could therefore be the crucial element in West Ham leaving Manchester with their first win of the season.

"It's important that Bilic and his team have worked on a plan, searched for a weakness in the United team and worked on exploiting it.

"It's a very common thing, for a Jose Mourinho side, to be very tight and defensive. It's a tricky ask to break them down but if you want to beat the best teams in the league it's something you have to do.

"It might just come down to which team wants it more on the day."

Diangana: We did enough to beat Everton

Grady Diangana left everything on the pitch on Friday night against Everton in West Ham United U23s' opener, but the Hammers could not quite force a goal as they were held to a goalless draw.

The hosts were the better side throughout the clash at the Chigwell Construction Stadium, and a number of times almost took the lead, particularly through Toni Martinez who had two fantastic openings.

West Ham's creative force Diangana, exhausted after putting in a fine, lively performance against the Merseysiders, was pleased with his side's performance and believes the result is something to build upon.

He said: "We're pleased that we did so well against last year's [Division 1] champions. We definitely had chances to score and to be fair I don't think they troubled us that much. We're pleased.

"The first game is always tiring! We did work really hard in pre-season, but when it comes to the season, it's always much more intense. Everyone wants to win, so it's much harder.

"I try and create as much as I can in front of goal for my teammates every time I get the ball, and I thought I did that tonight. We moved the ball well as a team tonight.

"The first ten minutes in the second half was difficult, because they came out really strong but other than that, we were definitely the better team."

The winger delivered plenty of set-pieces throughout the evening, putting a large percentage into extremely dangerous areas, but nobody in Claret and Blue could turn one past Everton stopper Louis Gray.

"There were plenty of set-pieces – my groin is tired now," he continued. "I haven't really been practising them but I was really pleased with all my deliveries.

"It was a shame nobody could turn one past the keeper. But maybe next week we can score from one.

"Today was just the day for them for me! I need to carry on working hard on them, and that could turn out to be a real weapon in my game if I keep developing it."

The Hammers next face Swindon Town on Tuesday in the Checkatrade Trophy, a game Diangana is looking forward to and hopes to learn from.

"Swindon on Tuesday will be a tough game. I'm glad this year's games are already coming around quickly, and we know the challenge of playing first team opposition.

"It's a good test for all of us young ones – for everyone. We're playing in an extra competition this year, so we're getting game after game and we're going to be learning every week.

"We can learn from our mistakes each week and hopefully have a successful season."

Written by @deportivo hammer

Welcome back Ladies and Gentlemen to a brand new season of Premier League football. I´m sure you are all very excited-I know I am. For our first fixture we head up to Old Trafford to take on Jose Mourinho and his form of Hoofball on Sunday afternoon. hoping to kick off our season with 3 points.

Pre season for the Hammers has not been great, with us playing games in Austria, Germany and then Iceland. Results have not really gone our way, but as most people have said, the result is not important getting through them without picking up injuries is.

Reasons to be excited, well the signing of a striker that should be able to start more than 15 games a season is reason enough for me. Plus the fact that he comes with a proven record in the Premiership, La Liga, Bundesliga and Champions League is great for the club. Credit to the Chairman and manager for getting this and the other new signings done before the season starts so hopefully we can hit the ground running.

As well as Hernandez we have managed to bring in Hart, Zabaleta and Arnautovic. Breaking our record transfer fee in the process. all three players come with Premier League experience. Hopefully we will be breaking the record once more this transfer window. Fingers crossed. We have also managed to unload a few squad players from the squad.

Now on to our opponents who have just returned from Europe after playing in the UEFA Super Cup against Real Madrid. Their Preseason has not been as bad as ours results wise but they have at least been playing in stadiums rather than the local park. Mourinho is said to be unhappy with the lack of transfer activity but it has not stopped him spending 146 million on 3 players so far. Lukaku, Matic and Lindelof. Lukaku unfortunately does have a habit of scoring against us.

West Ham still have a few injury concerns (nothing new there) Lanzini, Carroll, Kouyate and Antonio will all miss the start of the season but they all should be back in the next couple of weeks or so. Manchester United are without Luke Shaw, Ashley young and Marcos Rojo who are injured.

Predicted teams :

Manchester United : De Gea, Valencia, Jones, Bailly, Darmian, Herrera, Matic,Pogba, Mkhitaryan, Lukaku and Rashford.

West Ham United : Hart, Zabaleta, Reid, Ogbonna, Masuaku, Noble, Fernandes, Obiang, Ayew, Arnautovic and Hernandez.

With our first three games being away from home it becomes even more important to get off to a good start so I expect us to really go for it and put in a good performance. Manchester United will always be a top team with great players but being so early in the season its hard to tell what kind of form the teams are i . But I really fancy us to get a point tomorrow with one of our new boys getting the goal in a 1-1 draw.


Written by @CraigPodevin

What a way to start the season, away to England's most successful club that are back on the rise under Jose Mourinho. A very tough fixture against a new-look United featuring powerhouses Matic and Lukaku, we may struggle and I'll happily take a point away from the game. Looking at our own side, potential debuts for Joe Hart, Pablo Zabaleta, Marko Arnautovic and Javier Hernandez are getting us all excited for the season ahead.

General information

Stadium: Old Trafford

Capacity: 75,635

Address: Sir Matt Busby Way, Manchester, M16 0RA

Away seating: Away supporters are located in one corner of the stadium, between the East and South stands. The views are pretty good but be prepared for an upstairs walk to the concourse. Away supporters are quite far back from the pitch as there is a disabled area at the front.



Always check the National Rail website for updated delays, etc. when using trains. There is a dedicated train station for Old Trafford called Manchester United Football Ground station.

There is one train that will get you there on time from West Ham station (C2C). The train departs at 10.04 from West Ham to get to Stratford (via the Underground). From Stratford, use the London Overground to Highbury and Islington, then from there the underground to London Euston. From Euston you can get a train at 11.20 that arrives at Piccadilly Station at 13.50. There is a 14.21 train from there to Manchester United Football Ground which arrives at 14.31.

From Shenfield railway station (Abellio Greater Anglia) you can get the 09.53 train from Shenfield to London Liverpool Street, then from there use the underground to get to Euston. Again, from Euston you can get a train at 11.20 that arrives at Piccadilly Station at 13.50. There is a 14.21 train from there to Manchester United Football Ground which arrives at 14.31.

For other areas out of Essex please use National Rail to plan your rail journey.


From the London Stadium, the drive takes approximately 3 and a half to 4 and a half hours.

Leave the M6 at Junction 19 and follow the A556 towards Manchester Airport/Altrincham. Continue onto the M56 towards Manchester, taking you past the airport and follow the signs to the M60 towards Leeds and Liverpool. Leave the M60 at Junction 6 and go straight through the lights until you reach the stadium – note, however, that this may be closed on match days.


Trafford council operate a pay-to-park facility on match days within Trafford Village of Trafford Park, which is near to Old Trafford stadium. The parking charge is £4 in allocated parking pays on the streets.

A more popular option is to park at Old Trafford Cricket Ground for £10, which is a 10-15 minute walk to the football stadium. Try to arrive before 1pm, as it takes a long time to leave the car park.

The Salford Quays Lowry Mall offers an alternative, which is again approximately a 10 minute walk from the ground and costs between £3 (for 2 to 3 hours) to £16 (for 12 to 24 hours). There is virtually no traffic when leaving and the road takes you straight onto the M601 which joins with the M62/M6.

Food and drink

The Trafford, Sam Platts and Bishops Blaize only allow home fans to enter and most pubs near the stadium aren't suitable for away fans, so the city centre is a good idea.

The Quadrant pub has a mixture of home and away fans and also serves food and drink. Lime Bar at Salford Quays also serves both sets of fans. The Green Sports Bar is a one minute walk from Piccadilly Train Station. The Bridge at Sale is two stops from Old Trafford when using the Metro.

You are able to get food and drinks from the catering vans outside the stadium, as well as from the kiosks on the Stadium concourses. They are all cash only so ensure you have cash with you. There is a fairly priced multi-buy deal with the offers listed here:

-3 for £7 – selection of one hot item (meat and potato pie, steak pie, United pie, pasty, sausage roll or hot dog), one snack (crisps, Mars duo or Twix Extra) and one drink (Coca-Cola including Diet, Fanta, Oasis, Water, Singha, John Smith's, Bulmers or any hot drink)

-6 for £12 – Choose two hot items, snacks and drinks.

Enjoy the game, enjoy the start of our new season and most of all stay safe. Come On You Irons! -@CraigPodevin

So long, Sofiane
Filed: Saturday, 12th August 2017
By: Staff Writer

Sofiane Feghouli has given the clearest indication yet that he is set to join Fenerbahce. The West Ham winger has barely featured for Slaven Bilic's side in pre-season having been closely linked with the Super Lig outfit, who are understoood to have had an offer in the region of £7million accepted.
And the 27-year-old Algerian is unlikely to feature in a West Ham shirt any time soon, having confirmed this evening that he is on his way to Istanbul - as you can see from the following tweet he posted:

Sofiane Feghouli ✔ @sffeghouli
Tomorrow on the way to istanbul 🇹🇷..... Inch allah !!!
7:01 PM - Aug 12, 2017
4,065 4,065 Replies 11,056 11,056 Retweets 28,307 28,307 likes

Feghouli, who joined West Ham on a free transfer last summer made just 11 Premier League starts for the Hammers in his first and only season at the club.

Sakho travels to Manchester
Filed: Saturday, 12th August 2017
By: Staff Writer

Diafra Sakho has been included in Slaven Bilic's squad for tomorrow's season opener against Manchester United. The oft-injured forward is back in the first team squad for the first time since November 2016 having come through pre-season with no further setbacks. Also included in the travelling party is 19-year-old England youth goalkeeper Nathan Trott, who will provide back-up for first-team stoppers Joe Hart and Adrian. However full-back Aaron Cresswell has failed to be included; he joins the likes of Andy Carroll, Manuel Lanzini, Michail Antonio and Cheikhou Kouyate on what is already a sizeable MIA list.
West Ham United face Manchester United at Old Trafford tomorrow afternoon; the match is scheduled to start at 4pm and is being broadcast world-wide on TV.

West Ham goalkeeper Joe Hart admits he wanted a permanent move away from Man City
By Rory O'Callaghan
Last Updated: 12/08/17 11:20pm

Joe Hart admits he would have preferred to find a permanent move away from Manchester City as he prepares to make his competitive debut for West Ham.
Hart joined the Hammers on a season-long loan earlier this summer after he was once again deemed surplus to requirements at the Etihad. The England international, who spent last season on loan at Italian club Torino, is set to make his debut for West Ham against Manchester United on Sunday, live on Sky Sports Premier League. But the 30-year-old goalkeeper admits he was hoping to find a more permanent transfer away from City as he enters the latter stages of his professional career. The permanent move was going to be difficult," said Hart. "I don't think there were too many options for me to go on a permanent, if any. That was my ideal situation. "When you've asked me questions I've always answered honestly, and ideally I wanted to be signing a permanent deal somewhere so I could set my life up and have a direction. "When you become a professional footballer there is no written contract that says you have to play first-team football.
"It's a job at the end of the day but there are a lot of us, myself included, who just love playing football and I'm just lucky that it's my job. "It's a short career. The money side of it is great and it is important, but at the end of the day I'm a young guy, I want to play football, that's all I want to do. If going on loan is what needs to happen then for me that's fine. "The game moves quickly, there are plenty of people who have been in my situation and you have two choices. You can either moan about it and you can make smart comments and try to work out why it was done, or you can just get on with it. I've taken the latter." Hart is determined to get as much first-team football as possible this season with the upcoming World Cup in Russia now less than a year away. The Three Lions boast an embarrassment of riches in goal, with the likes of Fraser Forster, Tom Heaton and Jordan Pickford also competing for a place in Gareth Southgate's squad. "I'm trying to make a point to Slaven Bilic, he's my coach," Hart said. "I'm trying to make my point to Gareth Southgate, they're my coaches, they're the people whose opinions I care about. "I've always said the standard of 'keepers in England is very high. It's a privileged position to play for the country. Every single time I've put on that number one jersey I have been very proud and very excited for what comes with it."

Sofiane Feghouli set to join Galatasaray in £4m move from West Ham
By Kaveh Solhekol
Last Updated: 12/08/17 8:24pm

West Ham winger Sofiane Feghouli is set to complete a £4m move to Turkish club Galatasaray, according to Sky sources. The 27-year-old will fly to Turkey on Saturday to complete the move after just a single season at the London Stadium. The Hammers need to lower their wage bill after signing a number of players, including Joe Hart on loan from Manchester City and Javier Hernandez from Bayer Leverkusen. Manager Slaven Bilic has made five major signings ahead of the new Premier League season, which begins against Manchester United live on Super Sunday on Sky Sports Football. Pablo Zabaleta, Marko Arnautovic and Sead Haksabanovic have also joined Hernandez and Hart at the East London club. Sky Sports News understands West Ham remain in talks to sign Sporting Lisbon and Portugal international midfielder William Carvalho. They are confident they can secure a deal for Carvalho, but are hoping to pay less than his £40m release fee.
The 25-year-old, who helped Portugal win Euro 2016, is a product of the Sporting academy and has scored nine goals in 137 appearances since making his first-team debut in 2011. Sporting have recently signed midfielder Rodrigo Battaglia as a potential replacement for Carvalho.

Manchester City outcast Joe Hart takes pop at Pep Guardiola following move to West Ham on season-long loan
England's No1 keeper doesn't care what Spaniard who has sent him packing two summers running thinks
The Mirror
22:30, 12 AUG 2017

Joe Hart has taken a swipe at Pep Guardiola by claiming the only club boss' opinion he cares about is that of West Ham 's Slaven Bilic. The England keeper cannot wait to get started after sealing a loan switch from Manchester City to the Irons – and insists he has nothing to prove to Etihad chief Guardiola. "I'm trying to make a point to Slaven Bilic – he's my coach," said Hart. "And to make my point to Gareth Southgate, the England boss. "They are the people whose opinions I really care about. "City? I don't think about that. I am a West Ham player now – that's all I think about. "The other side of it is quite political – with contracts – and I respect that. And I ­respect my parent club, but all I care about right now is West Ham."
Hart was dumped by Guardiola last ­season when he took over at the Etihad – and he was shipped out on loan to ­Italian club Torino. City signed Claudio Bravo for £17million from Barcelona and, after a succession of clangers, he was dropped. Guardiola has since splashed out another £35m to bring in Brazilian keeper Ederson from Benfica. That's their problem," said Hart. "I need to look after myself. I need to be selfish in this ­situation. "My feelings for City will never change. I'm ­eternally grateful to them as a football club. They took me as a 19-year-old from Shrewsbury Town, took something of a punt on me. And I have had some ­fantastic times there. "The fans have been so supportive of me, even in the last year. There is no point in me ­taking it too personally, as it's just football."
Hart replied: "That is gone. I am not part of that club at the moment." Ironically, his Irons debut will be back in Manchester on Sunday, at Old Trafford, and he is anticipating a hot ­reception, ­reserved for City ­players past and present. Hart added: "I want to go up there and win, whatever side of Manchester it is or whatever side of the ­country it is." Hart has been joined at the Hammers by two other Premier League ­title ­winners in Pablo Zabaleta, his old City team-mate, and Javier Hernandez, ­formerly with United. "Javier, he is a global brand," said Hart. "He is a huge player. "He was ­almost iconic at United. Pablo and I are like brothers. He came to City when we hadn't won anything. He cost £6m, and, if you look today, that was a great deal." Hart is also focused on keeping his gloves firmly on the England No.1 shirt. He added: "I have always said the standard of keepers in England is high. There are some great keepers and I don't think that will change. But I want to stay England No.1."

Michail Antonio returns to action as West Ham midfielder plays in Under 23 match against Everton
West Ham utility man Michail Antonio featured against Everton U23s on Friday
Antonio is in line to be in the Hammers squad to face Southampton at St Mary's
Bilic has been pleased with the midfielder's recovery from the hamstring injury
Versatile 27-year-old has spent the whole of pre-season building up his fitness
By Ben Grounds For Mailonline
PUBLISHED: 20:27, 11 August 2017 | UPDATED: 23:43, 11 August 2017

Michail Antonio stepped up his recovery from a hamstring injury by playing just over an hour for West Ham's Under 23s on Friday night against Everton in the goalless Premier League 2 clash. Antonio has been sidelined since suffering a hamstring injury against Swansea in April which ruled him out for the rest of last season, but Hammers fans were given a boost with him playing for the development team. The former Nottingham Forest forward is still some weeks away from being fully fit and available for selection, but Slaven Bilic is optimistic it will not be long before he can call upon Antonio again. During his pre-match press conference for the trip to face Manchester United on Sunday, Bilic described Antonio as a 'good healer', and the Croatian boss believe he is ahead of schedule in his recovery. The manager said: 'Michail was injured against Swansea in April and the plan was for him to miss a couple of games because he had an operation, it was not just an injury but a big one. 'He was prepared to miss a couple of games and was and is ahead of schedule. He's a good healer, strong, mentally strong, a hard worker and a bit of a monster also, physically!


West Ham: Trott, Pike, Akinola, Pask, Neufville, Makasi, Coventry, Antonio, Samuelson, Diangana, Martinez
Subs: Henry, Matrevics, Hector-Ingram, Alese, Kemp

Everton: Gray, Kenny, Jones, Baningime, Feeney, Connolly, Bowler, Charsley, Sambou, Dyson, Garbutt
Subs: Foulds, Renshaw, Broadhead, Donkor, Grant

'So, the fact is he is ahead so he's playing on Friday night for the U23s and then he will miss the opening game of the season against Man United away, but he has been in training with us since Monday, he is playing tonight and he should be in the squad, at least, for the game against Southampton. That was planned.'

Antonio scored nine goals in 37 appearances last term before the set-back, with many of his goals coming despite being played in the right-back position.
The player has stressed a determination to be played higher up the pitch by Bilic upon his return, with West Ham still without Manuel Lanzini, Cheikhou Kouyate, Andy Carroll and Diafra Sakho as they head to Old Trafford. West Ham shaded the first-half at the Chigwell Construction Stadium but the contest remained goalless. Antonio showed his athleticism during an impressive sole run in the second period before shooting wide from 25 yards out. West Ham had other chances to win the contest through Alex Pike and Toni Martinez but the game ended in a stalemate.

West Ham boss Slaven Bilic insists he is not worried about his future despite having just one more year left on deal
Slaven Bilic's current contract with the London Stadium club expires next year
West Ham chiefs are expected to open talks with Bilic at the turn of the year
The Hammers open their Premier League campaign at Manchester United
By Kieran Gill for MailOnline
PUBLISHED: 22:33, 11 August 2017 | UPDATED: 22:33, 11 August 2017

Slaven Bilic insists he is not sweating on his contract situation, even with it expiring at the end of this season and the life expectancy of managers as short as ever.
West Ham are preparing to play Manchester United at Old Trafford on Sunday, with their manager well aware that this could be his final season in charge of the London club. Sportsmail understands talks are likeliest to take place in January but there is pressure on Bilic to convince the board that he is worthy of a new contract between now and then. 'The police are not going to throw me out of England because I don't have a work permit,' Bilic said. 'My contract is for one year and that's long enough. I don't think about my contract in a negative way. 'I am a long time in football to know that it doesn't matter if your contract on paper is one year or five years. Your contract is about the last five games and the next five games. 'If the last five results were good then you can have 10 games. If last five results were bad then you have five games and it is the same for those guys who have a 10-year contract and the same for the guys who are in their last year.
'It doesn't bother me in a negative way that I am obsessed.' Joe Hart is set to make his debut for West Ham and is bound to get some stick at Old Trafford, given he is on loan from Manchester City. 'Joe Hart is quality,' Bilic said. 'He is England's No 1 goalkeeper and you are considering England to always be one of the contenders for the European Championship or the World Cup. 'I remember him from Man City, I remember him from England and I remember him from Torino. He is a very, very good goalkeeper.' It was Pep Guardiola who decided to ditch Hart but Bilic said: 'We have total faith in him – otherwise we would not have signed him. We have complete faith in him. I know he is a top goalkeeper.'

Slaven Bilic insists West Ham board have shown their faith in him with their summer spending
The Hammers have added Javier Hernandez, Marko Arnautovic, Pablo Zabaleta and Joe Hart this summer
The Mirror
22:30, 11 AUG 2017

Slaven Bilic believes the West Ham board have already shown their faith in him by pulling out the stops in the transfer market. Bilic is preparing to enter the final year of his contract and there is no new deal imminent. But despite West Ham's current owners having previous in allowing managers run down their contract before letting them go, Bilic is not losing sleep over his future. Instead Bilic, who has shelled out £40million in signing Javier Hernandez, Marko Arnautovic, Pablo Zabaleta and Joe Hart this summer, is relaxed over the club's stance. He said: "I don't think about it. It was the same at my old clubs. I'm not worried "My contract is for one year which is long enough. I don't think about it in a negative way. "I've been in football long enough to know if it doesn't matter if your contract has one year left or five years left. I don't get obsessed with it. "The board are backing the club and the team. They want West Ham to be successful and that's why they were ready to spend money."

West Ham have made sure there is no repeat of the woeful work in last year's summer transfer window. Simone Zaza, Jonathan Calleri and Alvaro Arbeloa were among the arrivals to flop. Instead, they have gone for proven Premier League performers in a clear shift in transfer market policy. Bilic said: "We spent a lot of money, but not a crazy amount. And we have offloaded some players so the balance is less than £10million. "We have done the business and done our priorities. The board have done a great job in getting our first targets. We wanted to get quality players with character and something to prove."

West Ham head to Manchester United tomorrow bidding to also avoid the struggles of last season on the pitch. It meant the east Londoners were locked a relegation fight until April before pulling away from trouble and finishing mid-table. Bilic added: "If we can cut down on injuries then we can do the business. If we do that then it should be a good season for us."

Date: 12th August 2017 at 12:45am
Written by: Forever Westham

Slaven Bilic says Hammer of the Year Michail Antonio is set to return ahead of schedule from injury and that Cheikhou Kouyate's and Manuel Lanzini's recoveries are also positive, but admits Andy Carroll remains 'further behind' in his rehabilitation.

Antonio suffered an horrific injury against Swansea in the final third of last season that required, but Bilic has praised the former Nottingham Forest forward as a 'physical beast' as he approaches his return to action. "It was not just an injury but a big one." said the Croatian speaking on "He was prepared to miss a couple of games and was and is ahead of schedule. He's a good healer, strong, mentally strong, a hard worker and a bit of a monster also, physically! "He is playing tonight and he should be in the squad, at least, for the game against Southampton. That was planned." he added. Bilic then touched upon the recovery of both Kouyate and Lanzini, who both suffered injuries during pre-season, saying the Senegal star is 'way ahead' of where he should be. "He [Kouyate] and Manu Lanzini, who was our only other player to be injured in the pre-season, should be ready after the Southampton game, if not Newcastle, but certainly after the international break."

The only remaining injury that has the Hammers boss discouraged is that to Andy Carroll, who Bilic admits is behind the others in terms of his return. "Andy is a bit further behind but not a lot. At one stage in the pre-season or even last year, he was way behind but now it looks better. He is training individually, still, but he is basically doing all the movements with the ball and all that. If it continues like this, he should train with us next Wednesday." Carroll came under heavy criticism from West Ham fans earlier this summer when he was pictured out partying till the early hours whilst on holiday with his family.

West Ham have dodged a bullet by not signing overpriced striker target Andre Gray
Damien Lucas

West Ham United's best bit of business this summer may prove to be not signing Watford's record buy Andre Gray. Watford completed the club record signing of Hammers target Gray on Wednesday. The Hornets officially signed the Burnley forward for an undisclosed club record fee - but that is thought to be about £18.5m, as reported by the BBC. The 26-year-old, who was linked with a move to West Ham earlier in the window - as reported by the Evening Standard - has signed a five-year deal with the club having rejected a new deal at Turf Moor. Andre Gray of Burnley celebrates scoring his team's second goal during the Premier League match between Crystal Palace and Burnley at Selhurst Park on April 29, 2017 in London, England. It represents good business for the Clarets who have doubled their money on a player they signed for £9m from Brentford back in 2015. But the sum has understandably raised eyebrows among fans and pundits. In fact many have suggested the figure is more alarming than the world record £200m PSG have shelled out to sign Neymar. And not signing the former Luton Town forward could be the best transfer decision Slaven Bilic makes this summer. Aside from the controversy which followed Gray around last season following his four-game ban over historic homophobic tweets, it is his performances on the pitch which offer no indication as to why he has attracted such a large bid. Gray scored nine goals last season, his first in the top flight. But the most alarming stat of all is the fact he played in 32 games and failed to score in 26 of them. His nine goals were spread across just six games and three of them came in one match against relegation fodder Sunderland. Gray was only being looked at as a back-up striker for the East Londoners and perhaps there is a case to say he may have offered pace from the bench. But at nearly £3m more expensive than proven world class striker Javier Hernandez - Mexico's all-time leading goalscorer with a ratio of a goal every 1.4 league starts - the numbers just do not add up. Bilic, and most Hammers fans, will consider Gray a bullet dodged.

Slaven Bilic fires a transfer warning to Liverpool over Manuel Lanzini chase
West Ham transfer news includes the latest on Manuel Lanzini amid speculation linking him with Liverpool
Football London
07:00, 12 AUG 2017

Slavan Bilic has issued a warning to Liverpool over a possible move for Manuel Lanzini. West Ham's Argentine star has been mentioned as a possible replacement for Philippe Coutinho, who could be on his way out at Anfield before the end of the month. The Brazilian handed in a transfer request on Friday in a bid to push through a move to Barcelona - although Liverpool insist he is not for sale. Expectation is growing, however, that Coutinho will get his wish and end up at the Camp Nou, leaving Jurgen Klopp with under three weeks to find a replacement. Arsenal target Thomas Lemar has been linked - as has Lanzini. But Bilic is adamant West Ham have no intention of allowing their playmaker to leave this summer. "I spoke with him last season a few times, at the end of the season, and at the beginning of the pre-season and he knows we are looking after him," said the Hammers boss. "He is one of our key players, definitely. He has a big year ahead of him and we know his situation and we're going to do everything possible to sort him out. "He has got a long contract with us but, let's be honest, the chairman always used to appreciate those sorts of situations and I know he activated his clause even before he had to. "He already showed him how much we respect him and he deserves from us to do it again. No doubt he is our key player and we're going to well look after him. "When I said he is a great lad, he never showed me – and we speak on a daily basis – any sort of things that he is unhappy. "Of course every player knows his situation and wants to use his situation in a good way for himself, but I know for sure that he is happy here and he likes it."


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