Tuesday, 29 May 2007

Midfield Merry-Go-Round

West Ham boss Alan Curbishley is expected to trigger a midfield merry-go-round by tabling a £7m bid for Newcastle captain Scott Parker according to a report in the Mail. The former Charlton and Chelsea player is believed to want to return to the south, and it is reported Nigel Reo-Coker, who handed in a transfer request at Upton Park on Saturday, could be used as a makeweight in any deal. Newcastle boss Sam Allardyce is thought to prefer Manchester City midfielder Joey Barton, who is also attracting interest from Middlesbrough. In the same paper, Aston Villa have also shown an interest in Reo-Coker. Martin O'Neill will make the first move for the Irons skipper but will not initially meet the West Ham asking price of £8million. Tottenham, Newcastle, Arsenal and Everton are all thought to be monitoring the situation. The Daily Mirror agree, claiming O'Neill will be the first with an official approach and that Reo-Coker would be prepared to discuss to terms with the Midlands club. That would be news to the good people over at The Guardian, who claim Reo-Coker will rebuff all advances in the hope of securing a move to one of the 'Big Four'.

Elsewhere, Alex McLeish has sent out an SOS to Christian Dailly after a call-off crisis left Scotland stripped to the bare bones for the vital Euro 2008 qualifier in the Faroe Islands. Football Genius will meet up with the national squad tomorrow to face Austria in a friendly in Vienna. Dailly revealed he had to rush from a holiday in the Algarve to answer the call of his country. He told the official site: "I was in the Algarve for half-term when I got the call and flew from Faro to Stansted to make it here. By now, everyone will know what it means to me to play for my country. All my stuff was in a locker at West Ham so I had to ask our liaison officer, Richard Simpson, to get some boots for me which he bought in a sports shop in town and I'll have to cope. I was gutted to say the least when I was left out. I now have a game to look forward to and that's all I wanted. I've played in the reserves every week and played in the testimonial against Northampton. I was chilling out on a beach but my mind is right and I'm ready to play. I was annoyed to be left out but I made a vow to myself that I would get back in and I have." He might not be the greatest player in the world but his attitude is, and always been, exemplary. Shame a few of the others players in the current West Ham squad do not follow his example.

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