Hammers dealt triple injury blow

The full extent of the injuries sustained to Michail Antonio, Winston Reid and Pedro Obiang during last Saturday’s 2-3 defeat to Leicester have been revealed. Co owner David Sullivan’s son broke the bad news of the seriousness of the three player’s injuries on Twitter this week. Jack Sullivan revealed that Reid would have a scan this week but we expect to have him back in the next 4 -6 weeks perhaps longer, he also revealed Antonio will miss the next 3-4 weeks and that Obiang will be out for the rest of the season. The three injury blows come at the worst possible time for us as pressure grows on Bilic and we fall down the table. Pedro Obiang has been key for us this season and will be a huge miss, with the Spaniard in the team we have only lost 38% of our games but without him in the side we have lost 75% of our games. Michail Antonio will also be a massive miss for us over the next 5/6 games, the top goal scorer’s injury leaves us with just three fit strikers in our squad two of which lack vast Premier League experience in Calleri and Fletcher. Winston Reid hasn’t enjoyed his best ever season in claret and blue but has been a flickering light in the darkness of our shocking defensive performances this season and will be a huge miss for the next 6-8 games.

Rice picks up Irish national award

Our bright young Irish centre Declan Rice has been voted FA Ireland’s U17 Player of the Year for 2016 at a ceremony in Dublin. The U23 captain has enjoyed a fantastic season under Terry Westley and has recently signed a new deal tying the young star to the club until 2020. Many fans are calling for Rice to be given his first team chance with the severity of Reid’s injury and fellow centre backs Oxford and Burke not being recalled from their loans, but one thing is for sure the 18-year-old certainly has a bright future ahead of him.

Throwback Thursday

For this week’s addition of our weekly segment we ask Paul, 51, and a lifelong Hammers fan about his first game at Upton Park.

“My memorable first ever game at the Boleyn Ground was the FA Cup Quarter Final against Aston Villa in 1980. I was 15 and went with three mates who were West Ham fanatics. I was a neutral but even before the game I knew I was going to be a Hammer for life. We stood in the West Stand lower tier, close to the South Bank where the Villa fans were and it made for a terrific atmosphere. We were close to the pitch with fans packed in all around us, the noise was deafening. I was transfixed by the whole experience. Villa were top flight, we were Division 2 so the Midlands club were favourites. The first half was tight and we were holding our own going into the second half. In the second half we were attacking the end where me and my mates were standing, so each attack from us was met with more intensity from our section of fans. I think it was about the 83rd minute when we got a corner, from the resulting set piece a Villa player handled the ball in the box. There was an eruption of noise when the ref finally pointed to the spot. I was so caught up in the emotion, as Ray Stewart stepped up we all held our breath. Stewart approached the ball and slotted it into the left hand corner, the cheers were phenomenal. I joined in the song, “we’re going to Wembley”, and at that moment I felt part of the family. We did get to Wembley with Billy Bonds lifting the cup that year and I’ve been part of the family ever since.

Mancini Rumours

It has been rumoured by Sky Italia reporter Gianluca Di Marzio that former City boss Roberto Mancini was at the London Stadium last Saturday to watch us against the Foxes. The 52-year-old Italian has been linked with replacing Slaven Bilic should we sack him in the summer and has reportedly appeared at the London Stadium a few times this season. Mancini has also been linked with the Leicester job so one thing is for sure if we do have the unlikely intentions of employing Mancini in the summer we may face some opposition.

Transfer gossip Hammers hunt striker duo

It has been rumoured this week by Sky Sources that Bilic is looking to launch a summer bid for out of favour Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney. The 31 year old striker who recently broke the Manchester United scoring record will be expected to be allowed to leave the Reds in the summer. Sky Sources believe a high ranking West Ham official has told them that we would be one of the clubs looking to sign him in the summer. Rooney has only made nine league starts under Mourinho and has been linked with a move to home club Everton and to China recently, we may have to battle hard for his signature if he becomes available in the summer. It has been reported this week by the Sun that we are hoping to secure a season long loan for Chelsea striker Michy Batshuayi in the summer transfer window. Bilic came close to signing the Belgian for us last summer but he instead went to the Blues however Batshuayi is yet to start a League game under Conte this season despite scoring five goals in all competitions this term. So could the tall striker be heading for the London Stadium this summer after all?

Byram craving more starts

Our bright young right back Sam Byram is hoping for more game time under Slaven Bilic this season. The 23 year old started and completed 90 minutes for just the 4th time this season, he had this to say after the game to WHUFC TV “You can train as much as you want, you want to play, and hopefully I can get games in and keep impressing”. The former Leeds defender was signed by Bilic in January 2016 but has lacked much playing time through injury and inconsistency, making only eleven club appearances this season but is still only 23 and certainly one for the future.

Fonte vows to work hard

Our Portuguese centre back Jose Fonte has revealed how hard his time with us has been so far and promised to keep up his hard work. The 33 year old said “It hasn’t been easy, you might say it hasn’t been the perfect start, obviously, but I’m strong enough “. Fonte was speaking to the media after Saturday’s defeat. The Euro 2016 winner has come under criticism for his performances in Claret and Blue and has conceded 16 goals in 7 games. The former Southampton man added “I’m not scared and there’s no problem because I’ll keep working hard”. Fonte is yet to keep a clean sheet and his next few games will be key in with the absence of Winston Reid. The fact remains Fonte must rediscover his Southampton form sooner or later.