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Hammers set to move up their Gomes bid

West Ham are ready to raise their offer for Barcelona midfielder Andre Gomes who spent an impressive loan spell at Everton last season.

A top ClaretandHugh senior source has already told us by e mail that Gomes is a player they like very much and accept that £18 million won’t get him.

Now the club is doing its sums and could be ready to go as high as £25 million for the Portuguese international star to whom Manuel Pellegrini is attracted.

Personal terms will be relatively easy to settle with Andy Carroll leaving and the near 90k he earned topped up by another £10k a week or so.

Pellegrini is desperately keen to bring the player in and so far the club has answered every call he has made.

The Times reported that the player has become his priority signing and it seems unlikely the Irons look unlikely to let him slip away.

Barca are believed to want around £30 million but £25m could clinch a deal.


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Snodgrass’ novel FA explanation

Robert Snodgrass is reported to have given a novel explanation of his innocence after being punished by a recent one match ban.

The Hammers midfielder swore at FA doping officials on a visit to Rush Green but claimed in a letter to the ruling body that he Scottish accent may have caused the problem.

The report appears in The Sun so we treat it with some caution but they claim he wrote that  he “speaks quite quickly so it is possible that the Doping Control Personnel picked up wrongly what was being said amongst the players in the corridor.”

Well, ten out of ten for originality Snoddy but of course in the end it made absolutely no difference and the one match ban was accompanied by a £30k fine.

With drugs officials making regular visits to training grounds Snoddy’s punishment may well act as a warning to other players ready to use ‘language.’

However, we can’t help feeling that a £30k fine for such an offence is way over the top and one is left wondering quite what the FA does with the cash it collects for a variety of petty offences.

Such rules would certainly not apply in the courts and it’s basically pretty scandalous that people can be punished so severely.

The report adds Snodgrass he was found guilty on the balance of probability but it was never proven 100 per cent.

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Report: Hammers set to avoid ‘sick note’ striker

Out of contract Danny Welbeck is being tipped to join Everton despite an alleged interest from The Irons.

The Evening Standard is reporting the Toffees will even increase his £100,000-a-week wages as long as he passes a medical following his troubled past with injuries.

The Standard usually has a record for getting things right and it’s to be hoped that’s the case on this occasion for Welbeck’s injury record and lack of goals is as frightening as Andy Carroll’s.

According to www.transfermarkt.com the striker has been off injured for a total of 776 days (just over two years of course) since he joined Arsenal in 2014/15.

And last season his only Premier League goal in 12 Premier League appearances came against us on August 25 before another injury damaged spell began which kept him out for a total of 199 games starting in November.

In total he has managed 27 PL goals since he arrived in North London from Manchester United in 2014.

There has been no confirmation the Hammers were interested but Manuel Pellegrini was bitten by another former Gunner Jack Wilshere last season and is unlikely to be overly interested in another ‘sick note’ striker.

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Surely Corden’s having a laugh in Hernandez plea

Hammers fan James Corden is apparently determined to do everything he can to keep Chicharito at the club for another season.

Despite many believing the striker’s time is well and truly up at the club it seems the celeb fan and host of the Late Late Show disagrees.

Chicharito is close to the top of most fans’ to leave the club as Manuel Pellegrini reshapes his strike force and from all accounts £10 million will get the Mexican.

But according to The Mirror Corden is a big fan and leapt up from a restaurant table in an act of pure hero worship as the striker passed by the place in Mayfair.

Corden has a history of such behaviour with those disliked as football people by many, including such as Sam Allardyce.

The Mirror declares: ‘ It was awe blimey as Hammers fan James, 40, chatted to Javier, 30 – nicknamed Chicharito – who was strolling through London’s Mayfair with pregnant fiancée Sarah Kohan.

James and Javier shared a hug and Carpool Karaoke host was heard pleading with the Mexican ace to stay at West Ham next season.”

James looked starstruck (Image: BACKGRID UK)
Thankfully it seems manager Manuel Pellegrini isn’t as easily impressed as Mr Corden with events in the winter demonstrating when Valencia were interested that the club would probably be ready to let the player leave for around that £10m.
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Big Hammers connection in play-off triumph

Josh Cullen celebrating after an amazing victory

Hammers past and present played a massive role in the most dramatic of play-off finals at Wembley as Charlton Athletic returned to the Championship this afternoon (Sun)

On-loan Josh Cullen and manager Lee Bowyer were central figures as the Addicks came from behind to beat Sunderland 2-1  – the winner coming 20 seconds from the end.

And it was Cullen who was the the architect – knocking off a very quick free kick as time ran out – for Patrick Bauer to meet a cross from the left and crash his shot home.

The Hammers midfielder’s football brain was behind the goal after a game in which he had been prominent throughout.

At the end former Hammer Bowyer, who started both his playing and managerial careers at Charlton, said: “I’m so proud of the players – they kept going and going and gave me everything. This is probably the greatest moment of my career.”

Cullen meanwhile will now be heading back to the Hammers for pre-season where he has given Manuel Pellegrini a big decision to make on his future.

Watching on was another former Hammers boss Alan Curbishley as the south Londoners completed the most incredible of comebacks.


Irons admit interest in Barca midfielder

West Ham are ready to start upping their offers for Barcelona midfielder Andre Gomes.

The club confirmed to ClaretandHugh this afternoon by a senior source via e mail, that the club want Gomes and will remain very much in the market for the Portugal international.

In a realistic statement of intent we were told : “He’s a player we want but we will need to go higher than the £18 million on offer.”

The club will face stiff competition from Everton where the 25 year old spent a stellar season on loan and although Marco Silva would like to keep him the Goodison boss has no preferential option on him.

And that has let the Hammers in with a big chance of grabbing the player so long as they put their money where their mouths are.

Barcelona paid Valencia £40 million for the  central midfielder three years ago but he has failed to live up to their expectations and the Catalan giants are now ready to let him go.

Tottenham were reported to have had held an interest in the 25-year-old but have now switched their attentions to Real Betis midfielder Giovani Lo Celso.


Splash the cash? An alternative view

With the transfer window rushing down upon us, the cries to ‘splash the cash’ are rising equally as quickly!

It’s an understandable reaction but ClaretandHugh follower Emlyn Underhill offered an alternative view on the site’s Facebook Group which may be hard to swallow given that Spurs are involved but is none the less well worthy or reporting here.

Emlyn wrote: “What surprises me is that (gulp) Spuds aren’t taken as an example.

They have bought ‘nowt’ in the past two windows and yet had more success. There seems to be some great young talent coming through.

Our “first” team can play great football and IF Arnautovic is settled for the start of the season then hopefully we kick on for a great season.

That whole episode unfortunately put a bit of a stop on the season but when he’s on form he’s outstanding. The level we are at we have to accept mavericks.

Consistent performers are going to be going to top six Champions League clubs.

It bugs me when people say “they should just go and buy him”. Like the player has no say in the matter.


Porto striker option looking unlikely

West Ham have all but ruled out a much reported move for Porto striker Moussa Marega.

The 28 year old has been linked with the Hammers for several weeks but at a price of around £40 million the club seemingly continues to look elsewhere.

With Marko Arnautovic and Michail Antonio forming a serious strike force towards the end of the season with Felipe Anderson and Manu Lanzini behind them there are voices in the club downplaying the need for a marquee signing.

Marega is a decent option but the club remain focused on bringing in another front man or two with Premier League experience and Marega is now looks to be out of the picture.

A source inside the club talking to us by e mail revealed that the entire situation was being left in the hands of the manager and Mario Husillos but that Marega’s name had not been mentioned at any stage so far.


Report: Gomez interest may not be over

New reports that West Ham are refusing to rule out a move for Maxi Gomez are arising this morning.

Media sources have picked up on comments from ITK ExWHUemployee who claims that the Celta Vigo striker remains an option for the club.

The fact remains, sadly, that at £42 million it looks unlikely given the summer budget but Ex says there remains interest in the player.

He said: ““Until he joins someone else he is still an option but he does appear to be weighing up his options.”

However these appear to becoming limited with Barcelona reportedly having pulled out of the race after seeing a £20 million bid rejected according to Diario Sport quoting Radio Galega .

The striker’s position has been closely watched also by Spurs and we would have been interested at around the £22 million had the La Liga outfit been relegated.

It seems that all interested clubs have him priced at about the same £20 million…ish and should the Hammers go to say between £25m – £30m a deal could possibly be on.


Cresswell or Masuaku? – the verdict

West Ham’s left back position has been under fierce debate for months with both Aaron Cresswell and Arthur Masuaku being accused of a lack of defensive qualities.

And as the summer transfer window approaches many believe that this is a priority position to be be filled by Manuel Pellegrini.

Both players had their chances during the 2018/19 season with Masuaku finishing strongly having held the job down for the last five games when he turned in some impressive performances.

Cresswell’s form had appeared to improve prior to that but there remained question marks over his defending at times.

Various reports have emerged that Mario Husillos is chasing at least one new left sided defender and as a result it has been assumed that one or other of the current pair could be on their way with Cresswell recently being linked with Liverpool.

ClaretandHugh conducted a poll among it’s followers to see which of the two they would sooner leave and Masuaku was the choice with just over 62 per cent (953) preferring him to leave with Cresswell getting the vote from 583 of the 1500 who cast a vote.