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29 Apr 2019 08:46:43
Great win on Saturday. Two very winnable games left. It would be good to end the season on a high.

For me, Chicha and Perez leave this summer. (Carroll too, obviously) . Arnie is the enigma - if he stays and rediscovers his mojo, I would be more than happy, but I’m sure that MP and Husillos have been tracking plenty of strikers to add to our firepower up front.

I wonder what will happen with Masuaku, too. He’s not a natural LB, but seems to have upped his game recently. I can see Fredericks, Diop and the General as the go to three of the starting back four next year.

We need a CM powerhouse with vision to dovetail with Rice and to take over from an ageing Noble ( though I have to say Noble was terrific v the Spuds. )

With a fully fit squad next yr and one or two additions, I will start the new season with my annual optimism.


{Ed002's Note - Franco Vazquez or Dani Ceballos for example.}

1.) 29 Apr 2019 19:58:19
I think with Yamalenko and Lanzini due back to proper 100% fitness we’ll be ok in Midfield. Personally, I like the balance of Snods, Rice and Noble in the centre. What we need is a clear out up top. Lose them all and start again.

2.) 29 Apr 2019 21:31:24
I would personally sell all the strikers and start again but I can’t see anyone being interested in arnautovic so I think we will end up being stuck with him.

3.) 30 Apr 2019 02:16:57
Noble and Snodgrass both in their 30's we definitely need another midfielder as a long term replacement for Noble. If Ceballos was willing to come to us we should be all over that he's a class above and only 22. I'd be very Suprised if we could actually get him.

4.) 30 Apr 2019 09:38:19
Cheers Ed, so both are likely?

{Ed002's Note - No, both are not likely. West Ham have shown an interest in both players. In terms of midfield players three have the sustained interest of the club:

Dani Ceballos (CM) would not be cheap but he wants to kick start his career and would be a big step up from Obiang - WHU may look to an initial loan

Franco Vazquez (CM/AM) has been of interest to West Ham since last summer and he made clear that he was not interested in a midseason move when West Ham made an approach in January - but the interest remains and I would expect another approach in the summer.

Dani Olmo (AM) was looked at by West Ham last season when Dinamo Zagreb were happy to profiteer with interest from Borussia Dortmund, Crystal Palace, West Ham, Cagliari and most noticably Milan. They wanted too much and he is spending the season in Zagreb. Given previous interest, it would not be a surprise if WHU returned with an offer. Would be an option to Vazquez.}

5.) 30 Apr 2019 13:26:35
Thanks Ed
There is no doubt we need another CM, and of the ones I have read our interest in, Ceballos would be far and away my top pick. Young, hungry and the type of player we need to play alongside Dec. I like Nobes and Snods in the middle, but they cannot be fit every game and we need an upgrade and younger legs. Obiang i suspect will go back to mainland Europe, and MP will assess Cullen and Fernandes in summer.
Iv slated Masuaku on here in the past, and i have to say he has been very good in the last 3 games. Will be interesting to see what MP does with him. We need consistent players.
Ben Johnson looks more like a 2021 challenger at RB, Fredircks and Zaba will do fine next year for me.
Striker, I have no Idea what could happen here given our budget and the limited level of interest in the players we have there currently. Gomez would be great, but 40m is a huge part of our budget and we won't get much for the strikers we have! In MP we trust!
Ed, are any teams interested in Zapata and/ or Belotti?

{Ed002's Note - Roma see Andrea Belotti as their preferred Edin Dzeko replacement, but that has to be ratified by their new coack and Director of Football. Duvan Zapata - the player was not keen on a move to West Ham in January and the €50M asking price has already scared of Newcastle and Inter Milan - WHU could return but I doubt he would be first choice, certainly at the asking price.}

6.) 30 Apr 2019 15:04:29
Cheers again ED002, really good to hear honest answers on our transfer plans - are we still doing our transfers the same way?
(like headless chickens. )

{Ed002's Note - In terms of strikers, this is where I think WHU are:
Aleksandar Mitrovic (S) is a now realistic target and very much the Andy Carroll type player - but there will be a lot of competion - time to talk with Fulham
Said Benrahma (S) Brentford are looking for £25M with both Spurs and West Ham showing an interest - the question will remain can he step up
Maxi Gomez (S) very unlikely as he wants European football
Florian Aye (S)
Edin Dzeko (S) an enquiry has been made with his agent and if the price is low enough WHU may look to an offer, leaving enough funds to add another striker - but both Inter Milan and Everton are looking to him as well
Max Kruse (S) - has been watched by West Ham
Dario Benedetto (S) is a Plan C for Roma and RBL and suggested WHU makes no sense given his goals have dried up, his injuries over the past couple of years and he will only be able to get a one year Tier 5 work permit initially
Duvan Zapata - the player was not keen on a move to West Ham in January and the €50M asking price has already scared of Newcastle and Inter Milan - WHU could return but I doubt he would be first choice, certainly at the asking price.}

7.) 30 Apr 2019 18:43:15
dario benedetto sounds like the perfect david sullivan signing.

8.) 09 May 2019 19:53:24
RICE apart if we are going to improve and challenge for a top position outside the top four we have to replace NOBLE AND SNODGRASS who are average and look good against average sides but against the top sides you need athletes who can close down players in midfield and not give them a chance to look up two or three times before they are closed down which I go every game and see it with my own eyes NOBLE is ok on the ball but closing down he ain't mobile enough there are plenty of midfielders out there that are leaps and bounds above what we've got. COYI.



08 Apr 2019 17:11:57
Antonio dead leg keeps him out of tonight’s match squad.


1.) 08 Apr 2019 19:14:08
I would like to diop start over ogbonna.



13 Mar 2019 17:04:40
Congratulations, Declan Rice!




08 Mar 2019 18:37:18
I think we can score three at Cardiff.

Hernandez, Lanzini and Arnautovic.


1.) 13 Mar 2019 13:19:00



03 Mar 2019 11:27:52

Ditch the sentiment. He’s a hothead who thinks too much of himself.

We can do far, far better by looking elsewhere this summer.


1.) 03 Mar 2019 14:38:06
Agreed, I don't rate him and a nasty piece of work by all accounts.

2.) 03 Mar 2019 19:18:15
shelvey is kinda the opposite of what we need in our midfield, with rice already playing the sitting role where does the pace and energy come from?

3.) 03 Mar 2019 20:28:41
Sorry to disagree re Shelvey, hothead yes, nasty yes, but love to seem him with us, no place for softies in the defence, love a toughie at the back and up front leading the line!

4.) 03 Mar 2019 20:56:42
Fair play, Chelms and I have no doubt that he has some talent as a footballer, but I have several concerns:

1. He frequently runs the risk of being carded

2. His arrogance and opinionated attitude is not what our dressing room needs

3. If Benitez, who is a good man manager, has kicked him out of his match day squad, there will be very good reasons for doing so. MP doesn’t need the hassle when he is building a cohesive squad to challenge for Europe next season.

I too, like strong and competitive players, but you can be a tough competitor (like Rice) without being ugly about it and rubbing up referees the wrong way.

For the money that’s being mentioned (£20m) I am sure that Husillos and MP can find better.

Ah, well. Differences of opinion are healthy! 👍.

5.) 03 Mar 2019 22:15:41
Definately nasty, he tried to kill Harry Potter 😀.

6.) 03 Mar 2019 23:12:35
Markro, yes I will agree with all you say, but as always it’s down to who wants to come to us not who we want unfortunately? I think it’s all a bit silly reading about we’re interested in this one then that one, knowing none are seriously coming to us! it’s all so stupid, then as Mike said in a post about home grown players becoming super expensive after Brexit? Shelvey’s been linked with us for a while, I can’t believe that players when they are linked to other clubs don’t tap others at that club for info? He’s a London bloke, I personally would not Like to freeze in the north east being an Essex man!

7.) 04 Mar 2019 07:38:19
Very good Sdl!

Fingers crossed we can attract the talent MP wants, Chelms.

8.) 04 Mar 2019 09:06:12
Shelvey isn't a bad player, but I don't see him being an improvement on what we already have. We have Declan Rice in the holding position, we have creativity in Manuel Lanzini when he is fit, now we need an engine to permanently replace an ageing Noble. Not that I have anything against Noble, but he isn't getting any younger.

Shelvey is not a box-to-box player, he sits deep. not a problem, but we have Rice for that.

I'd much rather pay more money and get someone like Ruben Loftus-Cheek.

I have no idea if we are evening looking at Ruben, but he is young, strong, physical and is a box-to-box player.

9.) 04 Mar 2019 17:06:05
I like Shelvey and if Dec gets injured or red carded we need someone to keep pushing Dec and if Pel. wants him i don't see that being a problem. Another London lad would be welcomed.

10.) 05 Mar 2019 08:35:50
What about shelveys passing range? Top draw . You don't see him make any pass without enough pace on it . How many times do we see some of ours hit a pass and it comes up short? He would improve us in that area,




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19 May 2019 09:18:56
I would have liked to have seen Gomez come to us, but it was always a long shot. Strange that Arsenal are now front runners - I can’t see Gomez, Aubamayang and Lacazette in the same starting line-up. If he goes there all three will have reduced playing time once it’s spread out.




13 May 2019 09:35:27
Quick, but surprisingly hard question:

Of our starting XI v Watford, who would not make the side if we do manage to sign Gomez, Ceballos and Maripán?


1.) 13 May 2019 09:43:47
I would guess Antonio and Noble with Arnie more on the wing but would be totally unjust especially in nobles case but I guess that's evolution but a fantastic problem for mp to have.

2.) 13 May 2019 10:00:31
It’s a tough one. It’s certainly arguable that Antonio and Noble have been our best two players for the last few games. As you say, it will be a good problem to have.

It will fit with MP’s “Big Team” mentality - the big teams have squads, not just a first XI.

3.) 13 May 2019 13:59:48
Arnie would be my choice to come out of that team, for Gomez. He does not do enough for me. Looking at the top teams these days, the work rate from their CFs is incredible to win the ball back, and for me (while Arnie is great on the ball) he does FAR too little when we are without it. Also, he makes the occasional great run, granted, but is static far too often when we have the ball.
Not watched Maripan so i can't have an opinion on whether he would put the General or Diop out of a starting eleven that has 2 CBs. He would certainly provide good competition for the place though, or a great option to play 3 at the back if we needed.
Ceballos for me is a replacement for Noble in the LONG TERM, but not while Nobes is playing like this. His influence as a captain is unrivalled IMO, up there with Kompany. What Ceballos does is provide a GENUINE option to Nobes (at last) in the short term, and flexibility in the midfield for different matches when we need a different balance. Maybe MP plays Ceballos, Nobes and Rice, pushing Lanzini/ Wilshere out wider or onto the bench for some games. Would be a very good signing.
Does anyone have any stats for WHU with and without Nobes this season?



12 May 2019 17:56:27
Very pleasing victory today, after a very slow start.

Sad and disappointed that Fredericks had to go off as he’s been really good for the last few games. The contrast in pace was obvious when Zaba came on.

Both Noble and Antonio have shone recently and both had a great game today.

Top 10 is a coup after our disastrous start to the season and the huge injury list MP has had to cope with.

I wonder what the window will bring.


1.) 13 May 2019 23:13:08
Noble and Antonio have finished strongly I agree. Antonio looks like he’s shed a few pounds. I also believe the side needs Noble as he’s our only leader and when he doesn’t play we look rudderless.



11 May 2019 11:50:45
Time wasting through feigned injury and through substitutions in the last few minutes are rife in the game.

What about this: reduce the playing time to 35mins each half and stop the clock whenever the ball is not in play.

I reckon we would actually see more football that way and it would stop some of the rolling around.

I’d also like the ref to have a third card which he can show a player who “appears” to be badly injured. It would mean 5mins off the pitch recovery time.


1.) 12 May 2019 07:19:44
Will never happen.

2.) 12 May 2019 10:48:33
I agree - it will never happen, but it would do away with both time wasting and the need for extra time (which is arbitrarily plucked out of thin air by the ref) .



04 May 2019 17:07:01
Very good again today even without our two most influential players this season. Noble has really stepped up recently - beautifully threaded assist for Arnie’s first. Obiang, too, was busy and solid. Antonio’s work rate was superb: he was at left back in the final minute of extra time.
Lanzini is yet to discover his form, but 80 odd minutes won’t do him any harm.
The Balbuena/ Diop partnership continues to flourish. Fredericks and Masuaku both were good in defence and a frequent option on the wing.

Over all, a really satisfactory last home game for this year. We should be up for it away at Watford next week.


1.) 04 May 2019 18:36:17
Wilshere influential when he came on too, Hopefully we can get more out of him next season.

Good performances across the team today, diangana looked bright but faded abit as the game went on.

Another good performance next week against Watford and we could go as high as 9th providing results go our way.

2.) 05 May 2019 07:48:14
Diagana should have been played on the left yesterday. Presently he’s a 1trick pony and the opposition know he’s going to cut in straightaway. Giving him a go down the left would’ve allowed us to see if he can play as a conventional winger.

3.) 05 May 2019 12:01:43
I’m still not convinced by Diangana, but MP sees him in training every day so he must know his strengths/ weaknesses.

For me he flatters to deceive - plenty of attempted trickery, but no end product. Loan him out to a Championship side next season to give him the playing time he won’t get with us.

4.) 05 May 2019 12:04:18
- and I agree, A194, Wilshere looked very good, which is promising for next year (fingers - or should that be ankles - crossed) .

I hope he gets more playing time v Watford.




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18 May 2019 16:13:21
There’s always an issue with competing v the top six for players.

Our best arguments are that we are targeting Europe and that the incoming player would be an automatic first team pick if he stayed fit and on form.




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15 May 2019 21:38:38
Gomez for me because of his age, but Marega is a very decent 2nd best.




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15 May 2019 15:13:19
I’ve never really got the Shelvey hype either. Benitez is no fool and he let Shelvey wallow out of his first team for ages.




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12 May 2019 11:19:20
I’ve just commented about the ifs we all associate with Wilshere - perhaps the same applies to Lanzini. We know how good he has been before his horrendous injury.

His training stats should give a good indication of how close he is getting to where he was general fitness wise.

I would give him some more playing time today v Watford and concentrate on his match sharpness during the summer and pre-season.

He still has plenty to offer WH.




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12 May 2019 11:13:38
The word most of us associate with Wilshere is “if. ”

At his best he is world class. His cameo against Southampton was terrific. MP knows what he can do and has recently raved about his training.

An injury free season for him would almost certainly bag us another 10 points. if.





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17 May 2019 11:05:19
Newspaper nonsense/ media madness.

It is not true.

He is on his way.




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15 May 2019 15:10:23
Yes, I agree with much of that Nick, but as MP improves the squad, each player will know that a first team place isn’t nailed on and that rotation becomes increasingly likely. He will just have to make sure he sells that message to those he wants to come in this window.

If we can only bring in two:






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15 May 2019 15:04:07
Just more media claptrap. There is an aversion to business between the two clubs.




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13 May 2019 21:34:16
Pretty sure Ed Woodward was the original Equalizer, before Denzel.




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13 May 2019 18:27:45
It will also be interesting to see what happens with Edmilson Fernandes.