Fonte juggling his priorities
Our Portuguese centre back Jose Fonte has admitted to having a double focus as he prepares to face Hungary with his national side. The 33 year old said, “Obviously I want to win with Portugal but I want to win with West Ham and start to put things right”. Fonte was speaking in an interview with WHUFC.com. The former Saint’s man has been a regular in the Portugal side since 2014 and recently won Euro 2016 with his country. We face Hull City six days from today in our first game back after the international break and with the injury to Winston Reid there will certainly be more pressure on Jose Fonte.
Academy beaten by Blackburn
Our U18 side were in action yesterday at Little Heath when they were narrowly overcome by a determined Blackburn Rovers side. Assistant manager Mark Phillips was left distraught by the chances we failed to create against the Yorkshire side, he said in a post match interview “We played intricate football but if I’m honest we didn’t create many chances”. A win would have taken the young starlets top of merit group A but Callum Wright pinched a second half winner for the Rovers after Jamal Hector-Ingram equalised for Westley’s men. Our search for a late leveller was blighted by Johnson’s late second yellow for simulation; the U18s face Liverpool next in five days time.
Pike ends time at Cheltenham
Our twenty year old academy defender Alex Pike has been forced to end his loan spell at League 2 club Cheltenham. The right back confirmed the news on his Twitter account this week he said “gutted that my time at @CTFCofficial is over because of an injury”. Pike made just six appearances at the Gloucestershire team and will return to the London Stadium for treatment until the end of the season.
Kouyate in Senegal action
Our Senegalese midfielder Cheikhou Kouyate was in action against Nigeria on Thursday night drawing in North London. Kouyate captained his national side to a 1-1 draw in Barnet. Moussa Sow’s second half opener was cancelled out by a late Nigeria equaliser from Manchester City’s Iheanacho on a rare night of international football at the Hive.
Hammers hunt Hamburg defender
It has been rumoured this week in the Sun that we are eyeing a summer move for former Arsenal defender Johan Djourou. The 30 year old is out of contract at Hamburg and reportedly has no intentions of renewing terms with the German club. Djourou appeared at last summer’s Euro 2016 for Switzerland and made eighty six appearances for the Gunners scoring once leaving the North London club in 2014. Crystal Palace has also been linked with the experienced defender so we may face some competition for his signature in the summer transfer window.
Former Hammer tips Defoe homecoming
Ex Hammer Ian Wright has predicted former striker Jermain Defoe making a move back to us this summer. Wright said on his Sunday Sun Football podcast “I’ve spoken to him in the past and he has said he would love to go back and right that wrong”. Defoe left us back in 2004 in a cloud of controversy after handing in a transfer request following our relegation to the Championship under interim manager Sir Trevor Brooking. The 34 year old has enjoyed a career revival at Sunderland keeping them up last season scoring 15 League goals and has managed 14 goals so far this term which has earned him his first England cal up since 2013. Defoe has been the subject of major interest from us in the last few transfer windows and we had a bid rejected by Sunderland for him in January, so could Defoe be making a fairytale return after all?