Tuesday, 13 March 2007

Holy Malawach!

Yossi would have choked on his malawach this morning when he opened his paper to be confronted with the headline- 'Benayoun in pledge to stay at West Ham'. Of course, it only takes a few minutes of actual reading to realize the article doesn't quite do what it says on the tin. Marc Isaacs' claim that the Israeli has become the first West Ham United player to pledge his future to the club since Alan Curbishley became manager is based solely on quotes taken almost verbatim from the match programme last weekend. Benayoun was actually speaking hypothetically about supposed interest from Tottenham, and what else could he say given that they were our visitors on Sunday? There is nothing categorical in the following quote to suggest Yossi would be willing to play in the Championship next season.

"I think this is a great club with the history and the passion of the fans. It was definitely the right move for me. I live in an area where there are a lot of West Ham fans. I do get stopped quite a lot but I don't mind. The supporters are always very polite and nice to me and at the moment they are saying they believe we can survive. This season may not be going the way we would have hoped but I am still happy at West Ham and hope to have a long future here. In January the manager brought in a lot of good signings who have a lot of quality. The luck does not seem to be on our side in terms of injuries with Matthew Upson and Lucas Neill both suffering so quickly. Hopefully players will come back, stay fit and we can start to have a more consistent team. And that will help get results."

Elsewhere, the fascination with the financial details of West Ham's takeover continues unabated. The Sun state Terry Brown pocketed a £1million golden handshake when he sold the club to Eggert Magnusson. It is claimed the Icelandic biscuit baron had no option but to honour his predecessor’s lucrative contract as chairman. The mega-deal included a two-year notice period, which means Brown is still on full pay of £492,000, plus extras including his pension — despite him resigning as a director two weeks ago. It is in addition to the massive £30m windfall the former holiday camp owner banked by selling his shares to Magnusson in a £108m takeover deal last November.

The same article also mentions Irons
defender Danny Gabbidon is set to return to full training this week. He has been out for two months after picking up a groin injury during the 3-3 draw with Fulham on January 13.

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