David Gold declared himself “thrilled to bits for West Ham ” that Alex Song has been left out of the Cameroon squad for the African Nations Cup but at the same time offered the player his “sympathy.”
The co chairman told ClaretandHugh exclusively: “I’m sure Alex would have love to have gone to the tournament and played for his country and I’m sorry and sympathetic from that point of view but as a club it’s great news for us.”
And he added: “It’s not a total surprise because I think there’s some history between Alex and the Cameroon since the World Cup but I honestly thought we would lose him.”
Song was sent off and hit with a three match suspension following the elbowing Croatia’s Mario Mandzukic in the 4-0 World Cup defeat.
The 28-year-old missed the final Group A match in Brazil, a 4-1 loss to the hosts, and then Cameroon’s opening two Nations Cup qualifiers. He was then excluded from the 25 man squad which met Sierra Leone on October 10 and 15.
Gold added: “This is a purple patch in the club’s history. Everything is running in our favour but this may be the best news for West Ham in a season of good news.”