Daily News: Loads and loads of news from the West Ham world

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Emenike having medical today – Jack Sullivan

Young Jack has confirmed that the former Nigerian international forward is having his medical with the club today to finalise his loan deal to the Hammers from Fenerbahce.

Slaven Speaks – Liverpool – West Ham Official Site

West Ham United boss Slaven Bilic spoke to the media on Thursday ahead of Saturday’s Emirates FA Cup trip to Liverpool.

With the end of the transfer window looming, talk of possible arrivals took centre stage, as did an update on Carl Jenkinson’s fitness.

Can we start with an update on Carl Jenkinson?

SB: “We will have to see because he has an appointment with the doctor, the specialist, on Thursday and we will wait for results.  Based on that we will see how bad the injury is. It’s a really unlucky injury – we are still hoping it’s not that bad but we will see what it is.

“We know it is his knee, but we don’t know how bad it is [at this stage].  Based on that we will find a solution which suits everybody.”

How is it looking for your two strikers who are injured?

SB: “It’s looking good. Not regarding the Liverpool game, but Andy will be back playing, let’s say, in ten days, and Diafra and Lanzini in two weeks.

“They are ahead of schedule. I was here yesterday on the day off, and I watched Andy train. He was doing basically everything and he will hopefully start to train with us after the Liverpool game, and if he trains good he could be in the squad for the weekend.”

With that news, are you still in the market for a striker?

SB: “Yes, we are still in the market. We hope that both of our strikers will come fit for the rest of the season, but we are looking to strengthen our squad. We’re not going to buy a player, but if we can loan one we will do it.

There are varying reports regarding the status of where it is at with Emmanuel Emineke. Is he basically at the point of joining the Club on loan?

SB: “We are waiting for that, because it is a complicated situation. He is a Fenerbahce player, but he is on loan to Al Ain. We made contact, basically they called me from Al Ain, and we thought we could do [the deal] with them, but Fenerbahce have to be involved and now we are talking to them. In the beginning it looked easy, and now, according to Sky mostly, the deal is pretty much alive. So hopefully you guys are right.”

Any players going out between now and Tuesday?

SB: “No. We have Jelavic who might go to China, but they are in pre-season at the moment, so he is staying with us until he might sort the deal out.”

What if you got a silly offer for Payet?

SB: “From my point of view there is no money in the world that we would let him go for.”

Can we have the rest of the team news for Saturday?

SB: “We have a big FA Cup game, it is a big weekend. I was not happy with our draw, because we got Liverpool away and it is one of the most difficult games we could have got, but we are very ambitious for the FA Cup and we are looking forward to the game.

“We will make some changes, and we have 15-16 players who are regulars and are ready to play. They are not only fit from training but have match fitness too.

“Sam Byram is cup tied, but Tomkins is back in training on Thursday and there’s only Mark Noble, who has reported a little but of flu and has stayed home, but will hopefully be ok for Friday.

“Definitely we will put a very, very strong team out but we will make some changes. Some of the guys who played in the last cup game against Wolves will play again.”

West Ham teenager Reece Oxford joins Charlton Athletic on loan – The Telegraph

West Ham United’s gifted teenager Reece Oxford has agreed to join Championship strugglers Charlton Athletic on loan until the end of the season.

The 17-year-old shot to prominence at the start of the season with an impressive Premier League debut in West Ham’s 2-0 victory over Arsenal, aged 16.

That appearance made Oxford, who only lost possession once in the match, the second-youngest starter in Premier League history behind Jose Baxter.

Oxford can play in either midfield or defence and has made a total of eight first-team appearances in all competitions for the Hammers this season.

But with his first-team opportunities likely to be limited, Oxford has moved to Charlton for six months to gather more experience.

The youngster has played for England at Under-16 and U17 level, and has attracted the interest of all of the top clubs including Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester City.

Meanwhile, West Ham expect to complete the signing of striker Emmanuel Emenike by the end of the week after agreeing a loan fee with Turkish club Fenerbahce for the Nigerian.

The deal to take Emenike to Upton Park until the end of the season had been complicated by the fact he had been on loan at Al Ain, but negotiations are now complete.

Emenike is travelling to London to undergo a medical and complete the move, which will boost West Ham manager Slaven Bilic’s options up front with both Diafra Sakho and Andy Carroll out injured.

Bilic has claimed that Carroll will be playing again in 10 days and that Sakho should return in two weeks, but the arrival of Emenike will give him much better cover.

West Ham have already signed right-back Sam Byram ahead of Everton this month, as the club look to maintain their impressive form over the first six months of the season.

Reid’s happy to be back – West Ham Official Site

Winston Reid was pleased to play his part as West Ham United secured a point against title-challengers Manchester City on Saturday.

Reid was marking his return to the starting line-up in the Barclays Premier League following a month-long injury absence and he chose a high-intensity clash in which to make his comeback.

The Kiwi felt the performance was indicative of how far the Hammers have come and is confident for a strong end to the campaign.

“It was a bit of a ding dong game and they are a tough team to play against,” he said. “We had other chances too and it showed what a class keeper Joe Hart is that he saved Dimi’s (Payet’s) free kick. It was right in the top corner.

“At the end we had a chance with Cheikhou Kouyate, but it wasn’t to be. It was a good performance and we needed to bounce back from the disappointment against Newcastle.

“It was a great game for the fans and it shows how far we have come as a team to be disappointed in not winning against a team like Man City.

“I haven’t been frustrated [at waiting for my chance]. I spoke to the manager and he told me how the situation was. The defence has been doing really well since I have been out and I said to him that it is not a problem, when I am needed he can call upon me to play.

“Everyone wants to play of course, but I know the situation. I trained hard and it gave me a couple of extra weeks to get my fitness back up.”

Galatasaray president strongly denies Burak Yilmaz joining West Ham – TurkishFootball.com

Galatasaray president Dursun Özbek has strongly denied rumours linking Burak Yılmaz with a move to West Ham.

“I have received no offers Burak is our player and it really annoys me that these speculations have been made,” Özbek told reporters at the Union of Club meeting held in Istanbul today.

The Lions would be left with a striker shortage should Yılmaz decide to leave with only Umut Bulut, Lukas Podolski and Sinan Gümüş available however, Podolski is currently injured.

West Ham boss Slaven Bilic has however, confirmed that the Turkish international is on his transfer list and that his addition to the squad would be welcomed.

Bilic told Hürriyet reporter İzzet Çapa: “There is a striker problem right now at West Ham and if the board agree to sign a forward Burak Yilmaz is on my transfer list.”

Bilic does of course know Yılmaz from his time coaching Galatasaray rivals Beşiktaş and has made no secret of his desire to sign the prolific striker.

Yılmaz has scored 81 times in his last 140 games for the Istanbul giants winning two league titles since joining in 2012 and helping his side reach the 2013 Champions League quarter-finals.

Galatasaray could end up being forced to sell Yılmaz to meet Financial Fair Play regulations. The Lions would free up over €14.5 million over the next three seasons in contract fees should the experienced forward be sold.

Jenkinson might not play again until 2017 – Football Insider

Carl Jenkinson might not play again until 2017 in a major blow to Arsenal, Football Insider sources understand.

The defender has torn the cruciate ligament in his knee and is expected to be sidelined for nine to 12 months.

Jenkinson saw a knee specialist in London on Wednesday, who confirmed the assessment of doctors that he will not play again this season.

In the worst-case scenario, Jenkinson will be out for the rest of 2016 with an injury that requires extensive rest before a long period of rehabilitation begins.

It is same injury suffered by Theo Walcott in January 2014 and which kept the England international out for nearly an entire year.

Jenkinson has ended his season-long loan at West Ham and returned to parent club Arsenal to undergo his rehabilitation.

The right-back got injured just 10 minutes into West Ham’s 2-2 draw against Manchester City last Saturday following a challenge with Sergio Aguero.

Jenkinson had been on the fringes of the West Ham team in recent months after losing his regular starting place, with the Hammers also signing Sam Byram from Leeds last week for that position.

In other Arsenal transfer news, Mathieu Debuchy is weighing up whether to move to Aston Villa or Sunderland after the Gunners reached loan agreements with both clubs.

Liverpool, Newcastle and West Ham on red alert as Lazio look to sell international star – The Express

LAZIO are ready to cash in on midfielder Ogenyi Onazi before the January window shuts.

That is according to Italian publication Tuttomercatoweb, who claim the Nigeria international has attracted a host of interest this month.

Liverpool, Newcastle and West Ham are reportedly keen on the 23-year-old, while Bundesliga side Werder Bremen are thought to have made a £6million bid for his services.

But the Premier League trio are expected to step up their interest in the coming days with a concrete bid as Lazio look to sell the sought-after midfielder.

Onazi’s agent Stephen Makinwa revealed last week that his client would be interested in a January move due to lack of first-team football in Rome.

“The situation hasn’t changed much,” Makinwa said. “He’s a valuable player, it’s normal to have a lot of interest.

“We’re considering things, there still isn’t a concrete offer. He’s tied to the environment in Rome, but he’s young and wants to play and have space, like all footballers.

“He wants to stay in the Nigeria team, he wants to do well: he’d like to do it with Lazio, but if that’s not possible then it’s better to try with a different team.”

I Won’t Leave Despite Fiorentina Interest – West Ham Defender – Inside Futbol

Angelo Ogbonna insists he is not about to leave West Ham United despite interest in his services from Fiorentina.

West Ham only snapped Ogbonna up from Juventus last summer, however the Italy international has regularly been linked with returning to Serie A and cutting short his English adventure.

In the current transfer window talk of a move to Serie A giants Fiorentina has swirled and the defender admits there has been contact with La Viola this month, while they were also a presence in the summer.

But Ogbonna has ruled out leaving West Ham so soon after signing for the club.

He told Italian outlet FiorentinaNews: “Fiorentina? There were contacts last summer and this January.

“But I will not move”, Ogbonna added.

So far this season Ogbonna has made a total of 16 appearances for West Ham and has enjoyed a number of 90 minute forays.

The centre-back is locked down on a contract with the Hammers until the summer of 2019 and it remains to be seen whether the club will agree to listen for offers for him.

Atletico Madrid and West Ham target wants summer Premier League switch

West Ham target Gokhan Tore has revealed that he has his sights set on a move to the Premier League.

Slaven Bilic is a big fan of Tore having managed the winger during his time at Besiktas. Although the Turkish international is one of the club’s best players, it is understood that the 24-year-old will move on at the end of the season.

When questioned over his future, Tore confirmed that he wants to play in England:

“I do want to play abroad but my preference is England over Spain,” the Turkish international stated.

Slaven Bilic tried to sign the midfielder in the summer but a move failed to materialise. His excellent dribbling skills and blistering pace suggest that the former Chelsea academy player is suited for the Premier League.

He has been in good form for Besiktas so far this season, scoring three times and providing five assists in 15 league games. The Hammers usually play with wide attacking midfielders as the likes of Manuel Lanzini, Dimitri Payet, Victor Moses and Michail Antonio have all offered an attacking threat in these positions this season. With Tore, the Hammers would have an out-and-out attacking wide man to provide further strength in depth to an already talented squad.

It is no secret that the transfer focus in the summer will be aimed towards securing a £20m striker but Bilic will want to strengthen in other areas as well. Tore could be available for just over £10m despite his contract ending in 2019. He is currently valued at €15m but his willingness to depart Besiktas could work in West Ham’s favour in the summer and Bilic may be looking to sign the player for a bargain fee.

Howes – Dev Squad prepared to face anyone – West Ham Official Site

West Ham United goalkeeper Sam Howes said his side are ready and willing to face any team in the semi-finals of the U21 Premier League Cup.

Howes’ Hammers overcame Blackburn Rovers 2-1 at a packed Rush Green Stadium which was treated to goals from Djair Parfitt-Williams and Reece Oxford.

Describing his emotions at full time, Howes said: “I feel really good, it’s obviously a good effort from all the boys throughout the 90 minutes; we did well to score two early goals then stuck at it to hold out in the end.

“Absolutely, it was a very physical test, a different type of game to what we usually face. Each game in this competition has been very different, Exeter away, Fulham and now Blackburn. Obviously, it’s great to have passed this test as well.

“We’ll take any team in the semis, we know we can beat anyone, we know when we’re on our game we’re one of the best sides in the country, we’ll just focus on keeping the run going and then we’ll stand a chance against anyone.”  

Djair Parfitt-Williams opened the scoring after just 18 minutes, his fifth goal in four games, as he side footed Jaanai Gordon’s deflected effort past Rovers’ goalkeeper Andrew Fisher. 

Howes continued to praise the forward’s blistering run: “He’s on flames the kid isn’t he?! He’s doing his good properly now. Everyone in the team is really; we’re all pulling our weight.”

While Parfitt-Williams has been leading the line at one end, Howes has played just as crucial a role at the back in helping the Dev Squad extend their unbeaten run to ten games.

Having last lost way back in October, Howes spoke of the confidence in the claret and blue dressing room: “It’s a great achievement, ten games unbeaten at any level is a fantastic achievement, we just have to keep on progressing and try to add to it.

“I wasn’t actually too nervous at 2-1, I was confident we would stay ahead; we’re ten games unbeaten so we’re full of confidence.”

With just two minutes remaining, Howes, largely untested for the majority of the match, pulled off a stunning save to deny a long range effort that looked destined for the bottom corner.   

When asked about his heroics, the England youth international replied modestly: “I was just doing my job for the team; it’s what I’m there for.”

As if being a crucial component of the Dev Squad and training regularly with the first team was not enough, Howes has also been getting first team experience out on loan at Wealdstone FC.

Howes continued to explain how the new experience was benefitting his all round game: “Playing for Wealdstone is a very different experience, it’s a different style of football but it’s a great experience, and I’m learning a lot of new things which is the main thing.

“It’s a bit tiring playing Friday and Saturday for instance, I’ve done that a few times this season, but it’s all part of it, I love playing football so it’s all good.”

Westley – It’s a big achievement – West Ham Official Site

Reflecting on the Development Squad’s progression through to the semi-final of the U21 Premier League Cup, Terry Westley said his players and staff had every right to be proud of their achievement.

The young Hammers secured their passage into the last four after beating Blackburn Rovers 2-1 at Rush Green on Wednesday 27 January.

In front of a packed Rush Green Stadium, Westley’s charges started the game brightly and were rewarded in the shape of goals from Djair Parfitt-Williams and Reece Oxford.

Speaking after the win, a delighted Westley said: “Tonight we should be celebrating and be happy, the players in the dressing room are certainly happy. We’re through to the semi-final of the U21 Premier League Cup so that’s a big achievement for everyone.

“I’m pleased for all the staff, both players and backroom staff, that have been here for a long time as well as the new staff who have come in, done well and everyone has really gelled together.”

Another bonus for everyone connected to the Academy was the fact that the win over the Lancashire club extended the Hammers’ unbeaten run to ten matches.

Even more impressively, nine of those ten games have been victories.

Westley continued: “It’s a great run, really good for confidence. When we went 2-0 up I think some of us thought it was a done deal, and it wasn’t. We let a goal in just before half-time, which gave the opposition a bit of belief, when they weren’t really in it.

“The real emphasis at half-time was to say, let’s really manage this game, this is a game we want to win, we won’t get a second chance, and to be fair to the players, we really did that second half.

“The crowd tonight were excellent, we had almost a 1000 people in tonight, and it’s going up. To be fair to everyone working behind the scenes, everyone really is pulling in the same direction. And now people are talking about our players, we’re 10 games unbeaten, we’re in a semi-final, we’re heading in the right direction.

“If we’re lucky enough to get a home tie in the semi-final I’m sure we’ll get an even bigger crowd.”

Westley continued to stress that while the match may have lacked its usual flow of possession based football, at this stage of the tournament, the win was the all important factor. 

“It was a totally different game to what we are used to, it was very direct, headers and second ball possession. We can’t dictate what the opposition are going to do, not every team is like an Arsenal where they move it around nicely. Tonight it was a different type of game, and we handled that well in the end.

“In patches we got it down, not as much as I’d have liked, but I’m not going to be disappointed when we’ve just won a quarter-final.”

Makasi believes hard work is paying off – West Ham Official Site

West Ham midfielder Moses Makasi stressed that the Development Squad’s 10 game unbeaten run is the culmination of 18 months’ hard work.

Despite good performances, converting them into positive results proved difficult until recently. However, Makasi and his teammates are now dominating games while reaping the rewards from their endeavours, and clearly enjoying their football.

The versatile 20-year-old explained: “This run we’re on now is down to 18 months of hard work, with Terry and all the coaches. It’s also great to see young players coming through like Vashon Neufville, coming into the side and doing well.”

Makasi, playing in an effective midfield trio with George Dobson and Josh Cullen, was one of a number of players to impress during the Dev Squad’s 2-1 win over Blackburn Rovers on Wednesday 27 January.

Reflecting on the win, Makasi continued: “It was a good performance from the team, we deserved to win tonight, we’re ten games unbeaten now and hopefully we can carry on winning.

“It feels good to be in the team, at the start of the season I wasn’t starting many games, but I’ve worked hard every day in training, now I have played the last few games and I’m feeling good.

“We’ve very hard in training working well as a midfield trio, concentrating on playing the ball out from the back and not rushing it forward, but making sure we play the right pass at the right time.”

Now through to the Barclays U21 Premier League semi-finals, the Hammers will have to wait to see who they face in the last four.

So far, the possible sides are Liverpool, Hull City, Millwall, Charlton Athletic and Huddersfield Town, with Everton and Brighton & Hove Albion still to play each other. 

However, Makasi insists he doesn’t mind who the Hammers face in the next round: “I don’t mind who we get in the next round, we’re on a good run so whoever we get, I reckon we’ll beat.” 

Sligo Rovers sign Hammer Jaanai Gordon on loan – RTE

Sligo Rovers have signed Jaanai Gordon on loan from West Ham United ahead of the start of the 2016 SSE Airtricity League season.

The 20-year-old striker has signed a short-term loan at the Showgrounds, which will see his initial period at the Bit O’Red last until August, the next transfer window in England.

Gordon has spent the last two years at West Ham, having signed from Peterborough, but has yet to make a first-team appearance for the east London side.

The striker has enjoyed loan spells at Chelmsford City and Nuneaton Town over the past 12 months but will arrive in Sligo in full fitness, having spent the first half of the English season with the West Ham development squad, scoring four times in 10 games.

 Other News/Rumours

Di Marzio has reported in the last few hours that West Ham have made contract with Inter Milan in a late attempt to loan Davide Santon. 

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