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West Ham to investigate Manchester United supporter claims

West Ham have promised to investigate claims from Manchester United supporters that Hammers fans threw items into the disabled section at Old Trafford during their Premier League game in April.

At a recent fans’ forum, a Manchester United Disabled Supporters Association representative expressed concern over the safety of the disabled section at the club’s stadium after a series of recent incidents.

Among other incidents, they alleged: ‘The West Ham game resulted in a number of missiles being thrown into the disabled section. These included plastic cups filled with liquid, cigarette lighters and various items of food, including a giant sausage.’

The disabled section at Old Trafford is located directly below the away fans’ area in the south-east corner of the stadium.

Manchester United brought in a mesh net for European fixtures in a bid to protect their disabled fans which proved to be a success during games against Juventus and Young Boys however during the recent PSG match, French fans climbed the stanchions which held the netting together, causing it to collapse.

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Supporter receives life ban for DVD Spurs slur

A West Ham season ticket holder has been fined after pleading guilty to a racially aggravated offence at a Carabao Cup game against Spurs at the London Stadium last October.

The Crown Procession Service brought the charge after Met police received a complaint from another West Ham fan about the supporter aiming abuse at Spur’s Son Heung-min. The court fined the supporter £184 and ordered him to pay £110 in costs at Thames magistrates court after he admitted to referring to Son as “DVD”.

Following the case, West Ham gave the supporter a life ban from the London Stadium but have also offered him the chance to attend an education course with Kick it Out. If he completes this and signs an acceptable-behaviour agreement the ban will be reviewed.

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Rondon family settled up North

Salomon Rondon would prefer to stay in Newcastle admitting his family is settled there but accepts the decision is not his and may relate to Rafa Benitez’s own contract.

Rondon told the media earlier this month following the end of the season: “I can’t answer that question because you never know what happens in football, Yes, maybe it is my last game here. That would be a shame for my family because they are settled here. But this is football, sometimes it happens, sometimes you have to decide. It is out of my hands and I will have to wait. I am really happy here. My family is happy. But it is not down to me. We don’t know what will happen with Rafa as well so we have to wait.”

As well as five assists in the Premier League, Salomon Rondon scored nine goals in his 23 league starts.

Altogether, he was directly involved in 14 of Newcastle’s 31 PL goals in those 23 league starts.

In addition, he also scored when appearing as a late sub in the League Cup defeat at Nottingham Forest.

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Bizarre Hammers twist with Real Madrid star

Real Madrid star Karim Benzema has caused speculation on social media after posting a photo of himself with a crossed hammers emoji on his personal Instagram account.

The 31-year old French player was presented with the Mahou Cinco Estrellas Player of the Season Award 2018/19, for a campaign which has seen him make 53 appearances, score 30 goals and provide 7 assists.

Benzema joined Real from Lyon in 2009 for €35 million with the fee rising to as much as €41 million based on incentives.

Not sure this can a transfer rumour on the basis of one emoji, maybe he just likes Hammers.

I am not sure we should go out and get Benzema printed on the back of West Ham shirts just yet.

Last year Spanish media outlet Don Balon, known for their outlandish transfer claims, reported West Ham have made a £52.5m (€60m) offer for Benzema but the 30-year-old has snubbed a move by David Moyes at the time as he wanted a long-awaited move to Arsenal.

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Report: West Ham linked with £8m Portuguese player

West Ham has been linked with Andre Almeida who had a great season for Portuguese champions Benfica.

According to the Daily Express, West Ham and Everton are both keen on signing the eight-time international.

Benfica are asking £8m for Almeida, who can play both left and right-back in addition to defensive midfield.

West Ham could seemingly see Almeida as a utility player to cover a number of positions.

Wolves have also been linked with the 28-year-old with the article saying they have the greatest pull for Almeida with countryman Nuno Espirito Santo in charge at Molineux.  Leicester City, Southampton and Brighton and Hove Albion also said to be interested.

Almeida featured in 53 games for Benfica in all competitions, scoring two goals and adding 12 assists in 33 Liga NOS matches alone.

The Portuguese full-back has got a contract with Benfica until 2021 having joined the club on a free transfer in 2011.

With his primary position as right back, we are not sure on this one with Ryan Fredericks in great form and Pablo Zabaleta signing a one-year extension to his contract.

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Adrian could stay in the Premier League

Free agent Adrian could yet stay in the UK  by joining a rival Premier League club in the transfer window as a backup keeper new reports claim. Goal.com says a new backup goalkeeper may also be required at Liverpool as Simon Mignolet is expected to ask to leave in the close-season.

The report says Adrian is one name that has been mentioned in Liverpool circles though there has been no approach for the out-of-contract Spaniard, who is interesting Crystal Palace and Bournemouth among others.

The 32-year-old Hammer has already said his goodbyes to the supporters as he waved goodbye in his lap of honour following the 3-0 victory over Southampton and again at Watford on the final day of the season. Adrian joined West Ham in 2013 on a free transfer and made 150 appearances for the Hammers.

He has also been heavily linked to a return to Spain and in particular his former club Real Betis.

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Hammers look for keeper alternatives

Yesterday afternoon Chelsea officially confirmed what Claret and Hugh told you three days ago, namely that Willy Caballero has signed a 12-month contract extension at Chelsea for the forthcoming 2019/20 campaign.

West Ham had enquired about the availability of Caballero who has previously played under Manuel Pellegrini at Manchester City but was told that Chelsea had activated a one year option on their keeper. The West London side faces a transfer ban this summer so are trying to conserve as much of their squad as possible.

With Adrian leaving West Ham this month on the expiry his contract the Hammers are in the market for a keeper until Nathan Trott is ready to step up.

According to ITK @EXWHUEmployee the next goalkeeping target could be Huddersfield keeper Jonas Lossi who becomes a free agent next month although other reports suggest Everton are in pole position to land the keeper as their backup to Pickford on a two-year deal claiming he has already completed a medical.


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Poll: Which area does Manuel Pellegrini need to prioritise?


Gomez remains favourite

Maxi Gomez is still the supporters favourite they want the club to sign this summer even though he could be the most unlikely signing as it currently stands.

Spurs, Arsenal and Barcelona have all been linked to the Celta Vigo forward in recent days and West Ham fears they will be priced out of the battle for the in-form forward with his parent club said to be holding out for the minimum £44m release clause.

Although bookies have made West Ham the 7/4 favourites to land a deal with Gomez a senior club insider puts the Hammers chances as an outside chance of 5%.

Nearly 63% of Claret and Hugh readers want West Ham to still go all out to sign Gomez from a list of four targets with Aleksander Mitrovic coming second with over 17%,

Salomon Rondon was third on over 11% from 1,566 polled while just 8% wanted Moussa Marega.

Full results: 1,566 voted  Gomez 985 (62.9%) Mitrovic 272 (17.37%) Rondon 178 (11.37%)  Margea 131 (8.37%)

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Report: Hammers offered Marseille midfielder on loan

West Ham have been offered the chance to sign Marseille and Netherlands midfielder Kevin Strootman on loan claim Sky Sports.

The 29-year-old was linked with moves to Manchester United when David Moyes and Louis Van Gaal were in charge at Old Trafford.

He signed for French club Marseille from Roma for £23m last summer and has been a mainstay in central midfield throughout the season. But Marseille need to cut costs after a disappointing season in which they are sat sixth in Ligue 1 with one round of fixtures left to play.

However, he insisted he was never particularly close to joining Manchester United when speaking to the press last year.

I never talked with anybody,” Strootman told The Independent in 2018. “No, no. There was a lot of speculation but to be honest I only spoke with Roma.

“There were some clubs who showed interest but it’s always like that. They always say they are interested but at the end they don’t do anything so it’s nothing and I’m really happy that I chose Rome.