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Collins to replace Reid

CollinsJames Collins is widely expected to replace the suspended Winston Reid as West Ham face Stoke City this afternoon.

In injury news, Jose Fonte remains a long-term absentee until next year because of an ankle injury while Sam Byram remains out of action with a thigh strain until at least Boxing day. Fernandes is also on the injured list with no known return date.

Chiek Kouyate has resumed training from a hamstring injury but today’s trip to Stoke might be too early for a return for the midfielder although he is rumoured to face a late fitness test.

When asked about injuries in yesterday’s press conference Moyes replied ‘We have a few doubts. One or two on the way back not quite ready yet.” 

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London Stadium state aid complaint unresolved

255px-Flag_of_Europe.svgA complaint made to the European Commission about possible illegal state aid for the London Stadium remains unresolved papers from the London Legacy Development Corporation have revealed.

The LLDC Investment committee is due to meet next week on 20th December and the report says the stadium owners are still awaiting a response from the EU despite replying over a year ago.

The report written by LLDC Acting CEO Gerry Murphy says: “We are still waiting for a response from the EU regarding the complaint made in relation to state aid on the Stadium. The Corporation’s response to the complaint was sent on 6 September 2016. In November 2017 the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy contacted us with correspondence from the EU notifying us that they would be releasing the non-confidential papers from our response to the complainant unless we expressly refused permission. Permission was given, however additional redactions were applied to our response letter following legal advice as it would impact on current legal action. No update on the status of the complaint has been received.”

The original state aid complaint was raised in 2011 by an Architect but has already been closed so this is a new complaint from an interested party which most likely a rival football club. State aid is mentioned 39 times in the recent Moore Stephens report into the London Stadium and there appears to remain a risk that the European Commission could open an investigation.

The complaint is believed to centre on state subsidy accruing to a football club as a result of beneficial terms for the stadium lease and possibility of state subsidy arising as a result of financial support on preferential terms from public sector body to a football club.

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Departed winger explains what went wrong at Irons!

sofiane-feghouli-774898Sofiane Feghouli as spoken for the first time of his troubled West Ham experience declaring: ““I arrived at a club where I was not really given a chance.”

And he added: ““It’s like I’m expecting something super good by joining the Premier League, West Ham, their new stadium, etc. But in the end, it’s not been an adventure at all.”

Feghouli was sold to Galatasary ahead of this season and said: “I arrived at a club where I was not really given a chance. I was injured before the first day and I was away for a month and a half. When I returned, I did not play until the winter transfer window.

“I was not given a chance, despite my return and the fact that I made a few goals. It did not go well. I almost left the club in the winter transfer window.

“I had opportunities and wanted to bounce elsewhere as I was not given a chance. The club did not want to let me go. In the end, I played little.

“So it’s a bit of mixed feelings because in my statistics, it was not too bad for the little I played. But in terms of playing time, it was not at all what I expected especially in terms of the games played and the chances that was given to me by the coach.

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Bilic in Moyes and Sullivan revelations

bilicmoyesSlaven Bilic has revealed he has had a conversation with David Moyes since being sacked from West Ham.And he has also taken a swing at David Sullivan claiming that some of his remarks are “kind of low.!The Croat declared: “I’ve known him (Moyes) since he was at Everton, we would have chats about his striker Nikica Jelavic, who also played for Croatia.

“We had a relaxed chat about West Ham — why not? — but the details aren’t for the paper.

“To be fair, a lot of the things he said were exactly the points I would have made.

“He didn’t need me to tell him a lot of things because he still has (goalkeeping coach) Chris Woods, who was there with me from day one.”

Bilic is also clearly smarting from the criticism he took from  Sullivan for blaming the club’s woes in the transfer market on him.

He said: “West Ham is my club, I am not afraid of confrontation but I don’t want it with people I got on with for two years.

“But again I have to say something. To say all the good players were him, and the bad signings were me is kind of low. And it’s simply not true.

“I don’t want to praise myself but if you ask about Lanzini, I knew about him since he was at River Plate a few years ago, I wanted to take him to Besiktas.

“At that time, he was too much money and went to Al Jazira.

“Let’s be honest, who knew about Lanzini before he came to England? Nobody knew and that includes the chairman.

“But I never treated the signings like that, like they are my players or your players.

“No, they were all our players, collective responsibility.”

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Irons wage threat recedes as results improve

Winston-Reid-714445West Ham’s rejuvenated squad has come as the club developed a provisional relegation crisis plan.

But the upswing in results has eased fears the squad will be facing wage cuts of up to 50 per cent on their wage deals should they fail to beat the drop.

Ahead of David Moyes’ arrival, the club was having to look at the effects of relegation and consider plans which could see players wages halved.

But the mini revival with great result over Chelsea and Arsenal has seen the fears recede and victory at Stoke on Saturday would see the revival go from mini to major!

The team came within seven minutes of earning a point from the away trip to Manchester City before beating Chelsea and battling to a fine draw against Arsenal.

They now travel to the Bet 365 Stadium in great heart and hopeful they can escape the relegation places although they will need to do it without impressive Winston Reid who is suspended from the match after receiving his fifth yellow of the season against Arsenal.

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Carlton Cole back in training

25007422_2072108806408702_5796853420233064448_nWest Ham cult hero Carlton Cole is back in training after joining up with fan-owned club AFC Wimbledon.

The former Hammers favourite tweeted “Feels great getting back into training. Big thanks to Wimbledon AFC. Great working environment”

Cole has been without a club since he left Indonesia side Persib Bandung in March this year.

The former Hammer left Persib without scoring a goal in 268 minutes of action during his spell of less than five months. The No.9 puts his failure down to a complete breakdown in relationship with the team manager, Umuh Muchtar, who is a controversial figure in the sport having since been given a six-month ban for withdrawing his side from a match against rivals Persija Jakarta.

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Oxford’s impressive stats

Reece Oxford’s performance against Hamburg this evening was tracked by Twitter account @ScouedFtbal who recorded an impressive set of stats for the Hammers youngster.

Playing in a holding midfield role, the England under-20 star came off to a big reception from his manager at the end of Gladbach’s 3-1 win, hardly surprising seeing the stats.

He had:

O 62 touches

O made 40 of 47 passes

O 3 interceptions

O 3 clearances

O 2/5 aerial duels

O 2/2 tackles

O 2 fouls

O 2 fouls won

O and 1 shot which hit the cross bar.

Given his lack of action this season he looked entirely at ease  in a top-level league  during a very  good performance.

Hammers academy boss Terry Westley has always claimed that Reece is very much the real deal and it certainly looked that way tonight as he went about cementing his place in the German outfit first team over the rest of the Bundesliga season.

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West Ham release player by mutual consent

HenryWest Ham has confirmed that Doneil Henry has departed the Club after his contract was cancelled by mutual consent.

The Canada defender spent nearly three years in east London after he joined the Hammers in 2014 after he was granted a work permit with a fee set by a tribunal which in theory could rise to £1.5m.

Last year Henry joined Danish Superliga club AC Horsens on a season-long loan. He also spent two spells on loan at Championship side Blackburn Rovers. His West Ham debut and sole first-team appearance came in a UEFA Europa League tie with Astra Giurgiu in August 2015. The Brampton-born player suffered a leg injury during West Ham’s US Tour in July 2o16.

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Oxford impresses for Monchengladbach

reece-oxford-west-ham-oxford_3335636Reece Oxford completed a highly impressive 87 minutes in tonight’s Bundesliga clash between his loan club Borrusia Monchengladbach and Hamburg this evening.

Gladbach ran out 3-1 winners with the Hammers teenager catching the eye at the back with a calm and commanding performance.

The youngster left the action just three minutes from the end to receive a delighted response from his manager Dieter Hecking.

Playing in a holding midfield role, Oxford was rarely troubledas Gladbach rose to fourth position in the League when completing a well deserved victory with two goals from Raffael.

The Hammers England under 20 international had made his first Bundesliga start in the side’s 1-0 defeat of Freiburg when he impressed in in an unaccustomed right-back role.

But tonight he looked in even better form growing into the game the longer it continued.

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West Ham fan arrested for Lino near miss

HeaderA West Ham fan was arrested at Half Time on Wednesday night at the London Stadium as the Hammers held Arsenal to a goalless draw.

The young male fan had thrown a full open can of beer from the West Stand block 114 towards the linesman on 15 minutes after he ruled Marko Arnautovc’s header offside. The can landed on the pitch after narrowly missing the lino my inches. The linesman picked it up and removed it as TV cameras zoomed in.

West Ham security and stadium operator staff used high definition CCTV coverage to quickly identify the young fan in minutes and at halftime police swooped in to arrest the supporter.

The fan was kept in a police cell overnight and is thought to have been charged with drinking in view of the pitch and throwing a missile. He is likely to receive a three-year stadium ban from the club as well as facing a court appearance and possible football banning order.

The Met Police football unit tweeted. “It’s never a good Idea to throw a missile at the Lino when he gives a decision against your team as one West ham found out last night, he will be waking up in a police cell this morning instead of his own bed

Followed by “Just as an update the Chap who spent the evening with us for throwing a missile has been charged with 2 offences and will be appearing at court in the near future”

The referee included the incident in his match report but praised the club for quick action in identifying and arresting the fan. The FA is likely to ask the club to write to them to explain the incident but it is hoped they should avoid further FA sanction or a fine for failing to control their fans.