West Ham

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ALLARDYCE PRAISES CHARACTER

West Ham United manager Sam Allardyce has said that the 2-1 victory over Millwall during the weekend was enough to prove the character within the West Ham United dressing room.

The local derby between the two clubs was expected to be a tight encounter and it turned out to be one. West Ham United took the lead in the first half through Carlton Cole.

ALLARDYCE DISAPPOINTED WITH MISSED OPPORTUNITY

Sam Allardyce has said that he is extremely disappointed with the way West Ham United lost the opportunity to go level on points with Southampton at the top of the Championship table.

West Ham United could only manage a 1-1 draw with Birmingham City in the latest round of Championship fixtures, which also gave Southampton the opportunity to extend a small three point lead at the top of the table.

WEST HAM GO JOINT TOP

A narrow one goal win was enough for West Ham United to go level on points with leaders Southampton in the Championship. Even though West Ham United have played a game more than Southampton, this is a crucial advantage for Sam Allardyce's men.

The 1-0 win against Barnsley will take them to 43 points from 22 matches, while Southampton also have the same points tally but from 21 matches. Papa Bouba Diop is usually known for his defensive abilities, but he turned out to be the unlikeliest of scorers for West Ham United.

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COMFORTABLE DERBY WIN

West Ham United manager Sam Allardyce is being linked with a cameo role in a movie next year, though it seems that he is much more effective at managing the club!

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BIG SAM UNHAPPY WITH FANS

West Ham manager Sam Allardyce isn't happy with the constant moaning from fans - especially given that the team are currently on good form!

Whilst he could understand the fans concerns if the team was losing each match, he didn't expect to be having to answer to fans when the team are lying in 2nd place in the Championship, and with a great chance to get promoted.

"I don't know why they are moaning about winning," Allardyce told the Newham Recorder. "Because all this team did before was lose.

"It doesn't make any sense to me, but you're talking about the small handful.

WEST HAM PLANNING TO BID FOR THE OLYMPIC STADIUM

West Ham United are expected to submit a bid to move into the Olympic Stadium following the 2012 Games. It looks set to become mired in a flurry of legal challenges after Leyton Orient's chairman, Barry Hearn, lodged an application for a judicial review against the government, the mayor of London and Newham council.

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GRANT TO MAINTAIN FOCUS

West Ham United manager Avram Grant has said that he wants to maintain the focus for this team despite the recent good form. The Hammers, who host the Blues in Tuesday's first leg at 1945 GMT live on BBC Two, have been linked with a move for ex-Blackburn boss Sam Allardyce.

Grant said: "I have answered about this a thousand times. We are here because of a semi-final, a big game.

"My position is clear. I am the manager and will do my best for the club."

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GRANT RULES OUT CHANGES

West Ham United boss Avram Grant has ruled out changes for the Carling Cup tie with Sunderland. West Ham are set to face Sunderland in the third round on Tuesday and will do so with the majority of their key men on display.

They know it is imperative they get back to winning ways after enduring a troubled start to the new season. A 1-1 draw at Stoke on Saturday helped them to turn the corner and Grant will be looking for his troops to build on that performance in midweek.

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SULEJMANI EYES DREAM MOVE TO WEST HAM

Sulejmani has stated his wish to join West Ham United but his transfer is being held up the managerial saga between Ajax and Fulham. The Hammers are reported to be on the trail of Serbian international Miralem Sulejmani with a view to a loan move from the Amsterdam club.

But with Fulham and Ajax locked in a tug-of-war battle over Jol, the wanted manager has put the block on any players leaving the Dutch club.

Sulejmani, 21, has reportedly told Dutch newspaper AD Sportwereld he is unhappy with the delay.

WEST HAM KEEN TO KEEP COLE

West Ham are unwilling to let star striker Carlton Cole leave the club for anything less than £12 million, with any cash-plus-player offers certain to be rejected.

The Hammers are expected to officially announce that Avram Grant will be the club's new manager on Thursday, and the former Portsmouth boss has earmarked four or five players who he would like to sign in order to strengthen the squad ahead of next season.

But any moves for new players will need to be funded, with the sale of England internationals Cole and Matthew Upson the most likely source of finance.