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Team: West Ham United

Where from: Bournemouth

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12 Dec 2018 17:13:21
Interested to know what everyone HONESTLY expects us to do in the Jan window?

My thoughts:
MP's mentality will always mean progress, even if we are effectively safe by Jan as he will be targeting 6th. Ironmike will be better at explaining what finances we have, and where we are with FFP, but i suspect we have to move players on before we can make permanent signings and accommodate Rice's pay rise.
Realistically, I see him improving SQUAD quality in a couple positions, UNLESS MP has an opportunity on someone he specifically wants for his long term plan.
Left back is the main issue. Masuaku is not good enough defensively. Sell if an offer comes and expect a young, or temporary addition (e. g. Monreal) to come and challenge Cresswell.
Oxford looks like he is going, and with Zaba retiring at end of season, and Fredricks injured, expect a RB to be on the cards.
Cover for Declan. With Sanchez out for the season and Ogbonna our only backup at CB then a backup DM is important. Interesting that Yaya Toure has had his pay-as-you-play contract cancelled amidst the Turkish financial crisis. Maybe a temporary option until end of season when Sanchez returns? We may well see reports of him training with us before the new year as his family is in London.
Creative player cover. With Snodders and Anderson our only established technical players fit, i expect Nasri to come in to provide depth and cover here. I do not expect us to spend big on anyone else here as we have Yarmolenko and Lanzini still to come back, and 3 very good youngsters in Diangana, Holland and Silva coming through.
Up front, I only see movement here if we sell players. Arnie rumours may be true, although i am not sure which club will want him RIGHT NOW. Many clubs need a Caroll in Jan, and we could see him go on loan until his contract runs out freeing up some salary.
Out - Oxford, Masuaku, Antonio, Caroll
In - RB, LB, Nasri, DM and Rice TO SIGN!
If funds available, MAYBE bigger signing.


1.) 12 Dec 2018 18:17:42
I would go along with that Nickinho. It's a long shot to expect 6th place with current squad, much will depend on what budget Pellegrini has to play with when the window opens. Yarmalenko, Wilshire and Lanzini is a big loss but players have stepped up that have come in. If I was to be critical on team performances it has to be the tendency to step off the gas in periods of the game, allowing the opposition to take control. Pellegrini's philosophy is, if the opposition hasn't got the ball they can't score, and I've noticed that in recent matches the possession stats have taken a dive, not drastically, but enough to tell you that the team is conceding too much possession. Better opposition in those last three games would have taken advantage.

2.) 12 Dec 2018 19:37:24
I would personally love us to try and sign Kieran Tierney I think he is fantastic, versatile and is a leader. Though I may be being unrealistically ambitious and he may have no interest in us.

3.) 13 Dec 2018 00:24:29
Nice post Nickinho I think you have covered all the main points here, IT WAS the idea originally to have another spendfest this coming summer however injuries, and poor performances by some players demand more urgent attention, we don’t have to sell anybody to buy a couple of players as close to 35 m can be available However WH will look to sell on and reduce wage bill or at least keep it under control. IRONMIKE.

4.) 13 Dec 2018 00:30:41
Not much point in loaning out Carroll he can help us when available I'f someone's that desperate to need him in January they can buy him.

He seems to come back play a few games then get injured but he always seems to make an impact, but yes I would sell we still have an option at the end of the season and we know if he can stay fit what an asset he can be. More likely a sale than a loan.

5.) 13 Dec 2018 09:05:41
Lb- k Tierney
Rb- n clyne
Cm- a duncan
S- y poulson.

6.) 13 Dec 2018 12:51:05
Well written post Nichinho.
I, too, think that Nasri might be our only recruit in January. Your points about our full backs make good sense, but my gut tells me that only Oxford will leave if we get a decent offer.
Our full squad, when all our fit, covers most bases and I am optimistic that we are on course for a top 10 finish.
The summer spending was so extensive that we won’t spend this window. I would really have liked Almiron to come in, but can’t see it happening realistically.
I’m sure that MP will not move Carroll on, as he’s good cover for Arnie, who l also think will stay at least until the summer - at which time there may be a major shake up in our strikers.
MP and Husillos will be constantly scouting for the players he wants in the summer to make the squad increasingly his.




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27 Aug 2019 12:38:51
What would people like to see MP do with his team selection tonight?

I'd like to see Lanzini rested, he has looked SO good so far so we need him for the weekend 100%, and others need game time. I'd play JW in his more natural position in the 10. Fornals and Yarmolenko in the other attacking roles all interchanging.
CM of Sanchez (if fit enough for 90 mins) alongside Snodgrass/ Noble
Defense of Johnson, Balbuena, Ogbonna and Cresswell.
Up Front I would like to see Haller in the first half in hope he can get us off to a good start, then Ajeti can be introduced.
Antonio and Holland are the other subs i would look to use depending on how the game goes. BENCH: GK, Rice, Zaba, Antonio, Ajeti, Holland, Anderson.




25 Jul 2019 10:06:41
Interesting time for us now, as I am unsure if we will be making another signing, and if we do I have no clue where/ who this may be. One way to narrow it down is to look at the current options for the 25 man squad, and the number of HG players within it.
Based on the CURRENT squad, and picking those who (if at the club) are 100% included, I come to 23 players (6 home grown, as Snodgrass does not qualify) . This leaves two spots left, and both have to be home grown as we have met our max overseas players. Possible assumptions in my sqwuad are:
All three keepers are included. Our U21 keeper (Trott) is out on loan, so we have to register all 3 to be safe. David Martin is also HG.
Rice, Diangana, Oxford, Johnson and Nathan Holland are left out as they are U21 and do not need to be registered.
Xande Silva is included as he is not U21 and we need strikers
Hugill is left out
Marcus Browne and Josh Cullen are left out as they are not certs, but they are HG. If they don't make the squad they will be moved on.
Either we are buying home grown, or we are selling or loaning out more players with the intention of registering one of the U21 players I mention above.
What do people think MP has planned?


1.) 25 Jul 2019 11:25:23
Nickinho, did you sit up all night looking at stats before writing all that🤣😂Well done you for the patience👍👍 You could go on Mastermind as WH stats your chosen subject! I’ll take your word on all that and prefer just to wait and see who we sign, if anybody? COYI ⚒⚒⚒.

2.) 25 Jul 2019 14:06:42
With Obiang now gone and doubts about the future of Hugill, Oxford, Cullen, Browne, Chicharito and, I’m sure, several others - I can certainly see one or two more coming to the club.

Loans with a view to buy wouldn’t surprise me at all.

The club has gone on a real and successful drive to reduce the wage bill and this frees things up substantially. If the reports about Haller’s £70k wage are true, it shows that bringing talent in from foreign, far less well funded leagues, can help to keep some form of control over wages and puts Chicharito’s reported £140k wage in a completely different light. However, as Nick has pointed out, we need to fulfil the requirements of the Home Grown rules.

There will be more ins and outs.

3.) 25 Jul 2019 14:44:36
Its a tough one, because IMO we are still unbalanced at CM, but to be fair i have not watched enough of Fornals to make a solid opinion. We also need a backup target man to Haller, and better backup for Rice than Sanchez.
Still, I would rather we keep what we have, and use players like Antonio as a ST and Snodgrass (with his work rate) as a CM than spend the money for the sake of spending it. Understand why we got Sanchez and Perez last season as backups, but we don't need those types of signings any more, and they can be hard to get rid of a season later. We need signings for the future, not one season cover.



09 Jul 2019 12:48:28
A little part of me feels like our budget just shrunk with both the Arnie escapade and the Gomez cost increase. Judging by the reaction of the club, I don't think Arnie going was part of the plan, and if he was they certainly did not plan for him going at £22.5m. So something has changed, and MP's alternative plan is now in motion, starting with "WE MUST GET OUR NUMBER ONE STRIKER TARGET" Which explains the increased offer for Gomez, as it is now more important that we get a top lead striker that suits MP.
Now consider that Chica may go as well, and suddenly we need additional cover. However, given the clubs videos recently, they have given Chica a lot of media time, and IMO this suggests maybe they now want him to stay for the remainder of his contract, especially because without him we would go into a prem season with no strikers with ANY proven prem experience/ ability.
OK, so we probs got £10m extra for Arnie than we would have with Chica, but the cost of Gomez also went up by the same, so there are no gains or losses here. However, we write off Chica's value as he will go for free next season, whereas we could have got £10m for him this summer. This has to be factored somewhere.
If we believe our REPORTED net spend is around £30m (which I question, as I don't believe Husiloss would let this slip out), then we would have spent £64m on Fornals and Gomez, less £25m from Arnie and Perez. Leaves us -£10m already, and with only Obiang, Hugill, Byram and Oxford of any value to sell, who together could bring in £19m tops. Even selling Chica gets us to £19m left, which is hardly enough for a DM and a ST.


{Ed002's Note - Put thoughts about money to the side. Everything is way off reality.}

1.) 09 Jul 2019 14:15:52
I reckon Chich may stay now.

2.) 09 Jul 2019 15:48:51
Thanks Ed, appreciate your comment. Thought as much LOL
We can only try and guess using the numbers quoted in the news, but there is sooooo much non-disclosed money involved with transfers these days its impossible to work out or keep track.



17 Jun 2019 13:18:11
Hi Eds,
I read something during the Arnie saga in January suggesting an agreement was made that if we received a bid of £X million for him before a certain date this summer that he would be sold.
Is there any truth in this?
It would explain the short extension we offered to him, given Hernandez only has a year left on his contract making Arnie the only striker we could get money for this summer.


{Ed002's Note - I really don't know.}

1.) 17 Jun 2019 22:03:53
It wouldn’t surprise me. The China fiasco was farcical.



05 Jun 2019 12:39:59
Just a thought on a possible squad for next season. This is my preferred "realistic" option as it requires a higher net spend than reported.

GK - Fabianski, Roberto (Free), Allen (free) (Trott on loan)
CB - Diop, Balbuena, Ogbonna, Reid
RB - Fredricks, Zabaletta (Johnson on loan)
LB - Cresswell, Masuaku
DM - Rice, Hayden (£15m), Sanchez
CM - Noble, Cabellos (Loan with £15m option), Cullen, Snodgrass
AM - Lanzini, Wilshere, Coventry (Loan? )
WG - Anderson, Yarmolenko, Fortounis (£15m), Diangana, Holland, Dju (Loan? ), Kemp (Loan? )
ST - Gomez (£40m), Mitrovic (£25m), Antonio, Xande Silva
OUT - Arnie (£20m), Chica (£8m), Fernandes (£7m), Obiang (£10m), Perez (£2m), Oxford (£3.5m)

Total sales = £50.5m, Total Purchases = £110m, Net Spend = £44.5m
Worth noting that Snodgrass (CM and WG) and Antonio (ST and WG) are used as very good utility players in this squad, I had to put them in somewhere though, and I feel Snods is better in CM due to pace, and Antonio is at ST because I like Diangana and Holland too much not to be involved on the WG. Gomez is included as I would love him to come, but unlikely, however we could also get a striker for £30m and come closer to reported £30m budget. Maripan (£10/ 15m) could be an option if Reid needs to go, but not essential as both Rice and Hayden can play CB if required, so I have left him out.
Alternative: keep Arnie and just buy Mitrovic, then buy Maripan or Cabellos outright (assuming if we buy Maripan we can still get Cabellos on loan, if not buy Cabellos as CM is higher priority)

EDs, any news on interest surrounding Ceballos? Seems there is interest in him so a loan may be out of the question.


1.) 06 Jun 2019 08:45:24
Total spend should be £95m
By accident i added in Maripan at £15m to make the total £110m.

2.) 06 Jun 2019 15:19:21
Be careful NICK your be getting a fax from SULLY getting you on the payroll mate with your ins and outs 1 thing you've missed mate and that's the over 32 player who's washed up 2 years prior and give hI'm a years (holiday) I mean contract worth £80,000 job is yours then mate. COYI.

3.) 07 Jun 2019 09:17:57
Knowing our luck, all our attacking players will be back fit next season and then Balbuena and Diop will get injured long term. And with Winston's still as yet "unknown" fitness we will finish 9th and all be wondering "what if we had less injuries? "
The level injuries we had last season would have usually seen us scraping safety, or even going down, shows the progress MP has made.
One thing i was pleased with last year was that none of the players who got injured were ever rushed back and thrown into action simply patched up. Wilshere could have played many more games, and i'm sure he would have had he been under Wenger at Arsenal still. I believe this treatment from previous managers has contributed to his long term problems, as he is thrown back in when he has never truly fully fixed the problem at hand. let's hope he gets over them as the management seemed far more focused on getting him fixed rather than just "fit to play". Lanzini also looked like he had a very good rehab, so fingers crossed its the same for Yarmolenko and Winston. COYI.




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02 Sep 2019 12:01:26
100%, great performance.
Balance in CM is key for us, and Noble is the guy who enables us to achieve this when he's alongside Rice. Nobes is great on the ball and transitions the ball into the creative players so well. He also has the defensive mentality and physical commitment needed to help Rice protect the back four. Our biggest weakness may be that we have no cover for Nobes (our closest is Snodgrass and he is a winger by trade), while Nobes also has his shortfalls with his lack of pace. If he had Kante's legs he would be a superstar!
Ovations like the one he received on Saturday should be encouraged. He is a club legend, and we should want to show the current crop (Rice/ Lanzini/ Haller/ Fornals/ Diop) how we treat our legends, and make them want to do the same.
Have to put a word out for Masuaku, who once again proved he is improving at LB. Still has a mistake in him (especially against a big team who will attack us more) but he is improving, and we love a player who gets his head down and works on their game! Long may it continue.




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02 Sep 2019 11:48:22
100% Great performance.




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01 Aug 2019 13:39:34
I agree DIE 4, I love the technical play those 4 can do when we have the ball, but when they lose it Rice is our only shield, and can get overrun. I like JW a lot, but I still don't think he is a deep lying playmaker, or a traditional CM. Like Fornals, he plays best in the transition area behind the opposition midfield line and behind a striker, occasionally coming BACK to collect the ball, rather than starting off deep.
Of the players in our squad, i'd play Snodgrass alongside Dec, or Noble. Snods is far more aggressive in the centre than Jack, and will be better at supporting Dec in breaking up opposition attacks. I know it's not Snods' natural position, but he has all the attributes to play there, and we have plenty of wingers with pace where he usually plays. Nobes is also good, but just lacks the legs for me, and Dec also isn't the quickest.
I have to put in a word for Sanchez, as I have previously said that he was not good enough or risky backup at DM. But yesterday I thought he looked very capable in the DM role. I just hope he can stay fit this season.




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22 Jul 2019 16:56:27
The talk around Reece Oxford seems to have died down as well. I saw somewhere that maybe he had turned himself around, but this is all guesswork at this stage. I am not a fan of moving your best players around just because they are good enough in other positions. For me, your best players have to specialise in their positions because that is where they will be better than the opposition. Phil Jones is a classic example, he was a great CB as a young kid, but at Man Utd he player more positions than John O'Shea, and not he is average at a few positions rather than great at one.
Interesting that we have not seen Cresswell, Oxford, Holland or Xande Silva in pre-season much.

Oggy did ok last year, but that's all he is, OK.
Reid is on a long contract still, and if he could come back to where he was that would be great. But there are still questions on whether he can play MP's style of game. I'd love him back. Dec would be our best 3rd option at CB still, but that leaves a huge hole at DM where we have nobody who can be even half as good as him.

Pulgar would be a great addition to play as backup or alongside Dec. We NEED a solid player here because if Dec is injured then we really will struggle based on what iv seen of Sanchez. Sanchez is coming back from a very bad injury now, so he might not even be as good as he was before he came to us, and we don't even know what level that was, so it is a risky gamble. Nobes is too slow Personally I am really interested to see where he fits Fornals in, because he looks like a player that plays higher up (like Wilshere and Lanzini) when we need someone with legs next to Dec to give us a balance in CM. I don't know him well enough though, so he may be the answer. Pulgar would be a decent signing for me.




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11 Jul 2019 10:30:13
100% Markro, i hate these drawn out sagas, Anderson was bad enough last summer, at least it ended well for us.
Furthermore on Higuain, Sarri is now manager there, who loved him at Napoli so much so that he brought him to Chelsea. Unless he cannot work both him and Ronaldo into his style, and doesn't want a reliable striker he knows like Higuain as backup, I think it is VERY unlikely.

If rumours are surfacing of WHU speaking to Juve about a player, then it is more likely to be speculation around Moise Kean, who (surprise surprise) Everton are reported to have bid for. We always get linked to the same players as them. Maybe we are interested, possibly as a loan opposed to Everton's purchase, or we are just bluffing/ interfering to make it harder for Everton.
Any other Juve players we could be linked with?





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12 Sep 2019 13:46:22
From what i saw he made just one mistake, albeit a big one for one of their goals.
Could it have been a bit of complacency creeping in when 5-1 up? To be honest, at international level players should not show complacency, and need to be on it 100% of the time. But if complacency is going to happen, then I would only accept it coming from the younger players (who still have to learn this aspect with more experience) AND in games when we are WAY ahead. Both were true for Dec as we were 5-1 up and he is 20 playing in just his 3rd game! ENG fans need to give the kid a break and support him, be proud we have someone who could genuinely develop into a world class DM for the national team.
The only downside i see is that Dier was criticised for slowing play down too much, which ultimately meant Henderson and then Dec replaced him in CDM. Dec is a CB by trade, and this part of his game will only get better with more games. And to be fair, he is ALREADY better at it than Eric Dier was! Ultimately, against the TOP International teams, his DEFENSIVE contributions in breaking up play are going to be what enable England to compete against these top sides.




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02 Sep 2019 12:11:22
Absolutely shocking. So many questions and sceltics of VAR and then they make simple mistakes like this. It does not help them change the opinions of the doubters, while still slow, they MUST be getting decisions right at the very least!
The decision at Villa was a complete outrage. Grealish does not appeal for anything, he gets straight up after he passed the ball, and 100% they should have had a point. The ref could have waited for the shot and then made his decision, which would have allowed VAR to step in and review and overturn it. Terrible bit of refereeing.




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02 Sep 2019 12:04:25
Good money for a player with 10 months left. And a big wage off the bill, which could have easily unsettled some of the other players.
Shame he could never meet his potential at WHU, he just wasn't right for the football we were playing, good luck to him in Spain, i am sure he will score goals there!




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28 Aug 2019 13:35:27
I also think Sanchez had a good game yesterday. Re-assured me somewhat, as i worried he would not be good enough backup for Rice this season. He has impressed me since coming back from injury though, and he will do this season. He is backup after all, so we cannot expect another Rice to play no.2
Rice's partner in CM is my biggest concern. Nobes is the only NATURAL player there, and he has his weaknesses. All our other options are AM's who are playing out of position there, and lack the natural mentality to play in a 2 man CM. JW even said last night that he wants to get forward more and score goals, not what the role next to Rice requires at all. MP must see this.
We won't play ANY premier league teams this season where we have 73% possession and attempt 667 passes, so we were bound to see a few misplaced passes as we try to break down a team who set out to just defend and win set-pieces. Bit concerned that Diop and Balbuena were given the runaround by a league 2 striker though.




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27 Aug 2019 12:28:26
If Nobes had more pace he would be an unbelievable asset for us. Fortunately he makes up for it with his leadership on the pitch, a team with him in it may lack legs in centre midfield, but they are far more up for a fight with him there. This said, CM is a position we need to strengthen as Nobes is not getting younger, leadership qualities still don't cover his own weaknesses, and we have no other traditional CM's to partner Rice.
As for Jack, MP is still playing him out of position and next to a relatively inexperienced Declan Rice (people also argue Dm is not his natural or future position as he matures), so i hope fans can reserve judgement for now. Its simple, JW needs to be in Lanzini's position where his role is not as combative and requires less defensive work. JW should be used as a creative player, not a traditional CM like Nobes. Lanzini is my 1st choice here though, so JW should be fighting from the bench for that role instead.