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West Ham consider late move for Marseille star to bolster top 4 hopes

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West Ham consider late move for Marseille star to bolster top 4 hopes

West Ham are keen to strengthen their squad in the run-up to the end of the season, with the club targeting a top 4 finish, which would be their highest finish in Premier League history and would consolidate on the fifth-placed finish they managed last campaign.

Currently fifth, but having played more games than both Tottenham and Arsenal below them, it will require a mammoth, some might even say “massive” effort for the Hammers to snatch the final Champions League spot come the end of the season, with their thin squad set to be stretched further when Europa League football kicks off again next month.

Yet to make additions, the club realistically need at least two new faces come January, and both to hit the ground running, to stand a chance. At the top of the pitch, they must find an alternative striker to Michail Antonio: current alternative Jarred Bowen is just as important in his natural winger berth, and cannot play every game.

But, it is at centre back that David Moyes is looking to make his first January addition, in the form of Marseille’s Caleta-Car.  As per The Athletic:

‘Michail Antonio continues to lead the line without serious competition but West Ham are weighing up a move for Marseille and Croatia centre-back Duje Caleta-Car.’

Not a straightforward deal

It is easy to see why West Ham need another defender, with Angelo Ogbonna sidelined for the rest of the season with injury, and Kurt Zouma having only just returned from his own spell out.

But a deal for Caleta Car would not be straightforward. The Hammers are thought to be keen on a loan move for the defender, who has 18 months left on his current deal in France. On the other hand, Jorge Sampaoli and co. would prefer a permanent move, while the defender still retains some value to the French club.

Obviously, a loan move with an option or obligation to buy would be the most sensible compromise, but it remains to be seen whether such a compromise will be reached in the last week of the transfer window.

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2022-01-22T18:30:19Z

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 Manchester City 23 41 57
2 Liverpool FC 21 37 45
3 Chelsea FC 23 28 44
4 Manchester United 22 6 38
5 West Ham United 23 10 37
6 Tottenham Hotspur 19 4 36
7 Arsenal FC 20 8 35
8 Wolverhampton Wanderers 21 3 34
9 Brighton & Hove Albion 21 0 29
10 Aston Villa 21 -4 26
11 Leicester City 19 -3 25
12 Southampton FC 22 -8 25
13 Crystal Palace 21 -1 24
14 Brentford FC 23 -12 23
15 Leeds United 21 -16 22
16 Everton FC 20 -11 19
17 Norwich City 22 -32 16
18 Newcastle United 21 -22 15
19 Watford FC 20 -17 14
20 Burnley FC 17 -11 11
Player Team Goals
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 16
Jota, Diogo Liverpool FC 10
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City 9
Antonio, Michail West Ham United 8
Dennis, Emmanuel Watford FC 8
Ronaldo, Cristiano Manchester United 8
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur 8
Smith-Rowe, Emile Arsenal FC 8
Raphinha Leeds United 8
Mane, Sadio Liverpool FC 8
Mount, Mason Chelsea FC 7
Fernandes, Bruno Manchester United 7
Gallagher, Conor Crystal Palace 7
Maupay, Neal Brighton & Hove Albion 7
Sterling, Raheem Manchester City 7
Silva, Bernardo Manchester City 7
Bowen, Jarrod West Ham United 6
Mahrez, Riyad Manchester City 6
Saka, Bukayo Arsenal FC 6
Maddison, James Leicester City 6





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Erik ten Hag discusses Cristiano Ronaldo future, Harry Maguire & more in first Manchester United press conference

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Erik ten Hag discusses Cristiano Ronaldo future, Harry Maguire & more in first Manchester United press conference

Erik ten Hag took part in his first press conference as Manchester United manager on Monday.

Ten Hag takes over from Manchester United after what was a very, very disappointing campaign for all involved.

United managed to earn their lowest ever points total in the Premier League’s history and greatly underperformed in all cup competitions.

The Red Devils’ last game of the season saw them lose 1-0 vs Crystal Palace, a game Ten Hag was in attendance for and was asked about in his presser:  “I observed it [the Palace game], I analysed it, but it’s for me. I wasn’t in charge and I take this information into the new season.”

Elsewhere, Ten Hag was quizzed on Harry Maguire being United captain next season but gave little away: “I have to repeat, next season is a different season. He’s done a good job, he’s a great player, he’s achieved a lot and his contribution to Manchester United, so I’m looking forward to working with him.”

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The Dutchman was more upfront when asked about Cristiano Ronaldo staying at the club next season and also on why he took the United job.

On Ronaldo staying, he said: “Of course! [part of the project]. He will bring goals!”

On why he took the Manchester United job, Ten Hag stated: “The reason [Ten Hag took the job] is, although there is a fantastic history, is the high potential for the future – that’s why I’m here. I don’t speak with the players now, they need a break, they need a break to reflect, but I’m looking forward and I can’t wait to start.”

Finally, Ten Hag was asked if the Red Devils need some fresh legs in the summer, but he gave a very political response: “I just said, I’m still in the process of analysing. I’m looking forward to working with these players. The season before, this squad was second in the Premier League and there’s huge potential. If we improve, if we can work with them, we can get better results.”

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‘There was never a lack of effort’ Edu Gaspar speaks out on Arsenal’s January transfer window

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‘There was never a lack of effort’ Edu Gaspar speaks out on Arsenal’s January transfer window

Arsenal’s Technical Director Edu Gaspar has taken to Instagram to assess the season that the club have had following their final day 5-1 win over Everton.

The Gunners ended the season fifth, two points behind Tottenham, having been four points ahead with three games to play. It was a disappointing end to a campaign that promised much for Mikel Arteta and co., and plenty were quick to point to the January transfer window as a key game-changer in north London.

Spurs added Dejan Kulusevski and Rodrigo Bentancur to their side on deadline day, while Arsenal chased Dusan Vlahovic and Arthur Melo but, ultimately, came up empty-handed.

It left the club forced to rely on the fitness of key players, but injuries to Thomas Partey, Kieran Tierney and Takehiro Tomiyasu left them woefully exposed in what ended up an underwhelming end to the season.

And plenty of ire was aimed in the direction of Edu Gaspar for the lack of action, but the Gunners transfer director has now hit back on Instagram, claiming that ‘there was never a lack of effort, dedication and commitment and hours of work from no one in the club to end the season in the best way possible’.

Taking to social media platform Instagram, he revealed:

‘Thank you season 2021/22. I have to say how proud I am to be a part of this team. We went through different moments during the season, but in all of them we believed in what we were working on- especially in our players.’

‘I can guarantee, there was never a lack of effort, dedication and commitment and hours of work from no one in the club to end the season in the best way possible’

‘I’m really looking forward to the season 2022/23.’

It is safe to say that Arsenal are likely to be busy once more this summer, and Edu will again have his work cut out to raise the level of the squad.

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2022-03-29T15:35:53Z

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 Manchester City 37 72 90
2 Liverpool FC 37 66 89
3 Chelsea FC 37 42 71
4 Tottenham Hotspur 37 24 68
5 Arsenal FC 37 9 66
6 Manchester United 37 1 58
7 West Ham United 37 11 56
8 Wolverhampton Wanderers 37 -3 51
9 Leicester City 37 0 49
10 Brighton & Hove Albion 37 -4 48
11 Brentford FC 37 -7 46
12 Newcastle United 37 -19 46
13 Crystal Palace 37 3 45
14 Aston Villa 37 -1 45
15 Southampton FC 37 -21 40
16 Everton FC 37 -19 39
17 Burnley FC 37 -18 35
18 Leeds United 37 -38 35
19 Watford FC 37 -42 23
20 Norwich City 37 -56 22
Player Team Goals
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 23
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur 23
Ronaldo, Cristiano Manchester United 18
Kane, Harry Tottenham Hotspur 17
Mane, Sadio Liverpool FC 16
De Bruyne, Kevin Manchester City 15
Jota, Diogo Liverpool FC 15
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City 15
Zaha, Wilfried Crystal Palace 14
Sterling, Raheem Manchester City 13
Bowen, Jarrod West Ham United 12
Maddison, James Leicester City 12
Toney, Ivan Brentford FC 12
Mount, Mason Chelsea FC 11
Saka, Bukayo Arsenal FC 11
Mahrez, Riyad Manchester City 11
Richarlison Everton FC 11
Pukki, Teemu Norwich City 11
Raphinha Leeds United 11
Watkins, Ollie Aston Villa 11





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Jack Grealish offers honest assessment of first Manchester City season

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Jack Grealish offers honest assessment of first Manchester City season

Jack Grealish has offered up an honest assessment of his first season in a Manchester City shirt.

Grealish of course signed for Manchester City in the summer of 2021, smashing the Premier League transfer record to set the Sky Blues back £100m.

With such a high price tag and much of the league having a natural hatred towards Manchester City due to their owners, there was a lot of pressure on Grealish to deliver.

However, though he showed patches of quality, it is fair to say that the 26-year-old has not been at his best this term.

Grealish scored three and assisted three in 26 league games with his most memorable moments those misses at the end of normal time during Manchester City’s second leg semi-final with Real Madrid.

Regardless of his struggles, though, Grealish still ended 2021/22 with a league title – something he has been discussing recently:

“It’s unbelievable. I ran down the tunnel and cried my eyes out,” Grealish admitted.

“Honestly, I can’t put it into words, I was crying my eyes out. The medal means everything. For me, I’ve never won it so I’m so happy!

“As a kid you want to win the Premier League and to win the Premier League… I can’t put it into words honestly. We know how good of a side Villa are and they showed it. With our quality we can beat anyone.”

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Grealish also reflected on his first season at the Etihad: “In four words, harder than I thought. I’ve enjoyed every minute. I’ve stepped out of my comfort zone but honestly this makes up for it,” Grealish added.

“I know that I can (kick-on) and I certainly will. I feel like I played my part, like that goal v West Ham. I can kick on so much more. I know myself how much of a role I have to play at this club.

“These guys here have made me feel so welcome. Honestly, the lads here are unbelievable and I love them so much. Pep’s a genius. He’s unbelievable football wise. I’d love for you to come in and watch one of his team talks before the game.

“Working with him day to day on the training pitch is unbelievable. I’ve got the medal here now so hopefully many more.”

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