West Ham United have signed Switzerland U19 defender Fabio Daprela from
Grasshopper Club Zurich
West Ham United are pleased to announce the signing of Switzerland Under-19
defender Fabio Daprela from Grasshopper Club Zurich for an undisclosed fee.
Daprela, a left-back, flew straight to London to complete his move to the
Boleyn Ground from the UEFA European U19 Championship finals in Ukraine. The
club had to contend with interest from a host of top Italian sides for the
youngster, who has signed a five-year deal after moving from the Zurich
The 18-year-old helped the Swiss to get to within five minutes of a place in
the semi-finals in Ukraine. Daprela played the full 90 minutes in the 1-1
draw with England, 77 minutes of the 2-1 victory over Slovenia, and the full
game as Switzerland suffered an agonising 1-0 defeat by the host nation in
their final Group A fixture. He has been a regular for his nation in
previous years, and also started all three of Switzerland's matches at the
2008 UEFA European U17 Championship finals in Turkey. The teenager marked
new West Ham team-mate Daniel Kearns when Switzerland's U19s beat Northern
Ireland 1-0 in a Nationwide International Challenge match in Belfast in
April this year.
At club level, Daprela joined Grasshoppers in 2003, having started his
career at youth club SC YF Juventus. He made eleven appearances for the
club's first-team. Daprela becomes the second Swiss player to join the
Hammers in the past 12 months, joining full international Valon Behrami at
the Boleyn Ground.
Daprela is now looking forward to meeting Gianfranco Zola and his new
team-mates as they prepare for the start of the new Barclays Premier League
season. "I am very happy to come here as it is a great club," Daprela said.
"I saw the team play on television last season and it is a very good team.
They have a great manager and it is good to be here. "I want to play for the
first team in the Premier League. I think I can learn a lot from the manger
and people like Matthew Upson and Mark Noble and I am really looking forward
to the season starting."
Dyer leads Sir Bobby tributes
Kieron Dyer and Gianfranco Zola have paid their respects to the late Sir
Kieron Dyer has spoken of the "massive influence" of Sir Bobby Robson on his
life as he led the West Ham United tributes for a true legend of the game.
The England midfielder was told of Sir Bobby's death at the age of 76 just
before the 2-0 defeat of Beijing Guoan in the Barclays Asia Trophy in China
on Friday. Fittingly, Dyer was named man of the match.
A minute of silence was held for the former Newcastle United, Ipswich Town
and England manager before the match, while the players and coaching staff
wore black armbands to show their respect.
Dyer said: "He was a massive influence on my career - not just on the pitch
but off the pitch. I got told five minutes before kick-off so it was quite a
shock to the system. He had beaten cancer so many times. He was such a
fighter, you thought he would go on until well into his hundreds. It wasn't
"The minute's silence did overwhelm me and now I am just going to look at
all the great memories he bought to my life and all the special bits like in
team talks when he used to call me Kevin - he used to forget names a lot.
Hopefully back home in England when there are games being played instead of
a minute's silence there will be a minute's standing ovation with clapping
to celebrate his life because what he has brought to the game of football is
"There are so many great memories and football is his life. You just have to
go and look where Newcastle United are. He got sacked for taking us fifth in
the Premier League and now they are in the Championship. He just loved
football and he is going to be missed. My prayers are with his wife Elsie
and his family.
"I played my best football under him. Off the pitch, he treated me like a
son. We obviously had the Ipswich connection together so as soon as he was
Newcastle manager he made a bee-line for me and took it upon himself to make
sure I moved out of the notorious Quayside straight away to somewhere quiet.
He was everything to me. A father figure to me and I am really going to miss
Zola said the game had lost one of its leading lights: "I have wonderful
memories of Sir Bobby. He was a man I respected very much. What I liked
about him was that he was always positive, always smiling. He has been a
great ambassador for football in general. I pay my respects to him. He is a
big loss for us."
Former West Ham striker Tony Cottee played under Sir Bobby with England.
"This is upsetting news. Sir Bobby gave me my seven England caps but above
all else he was a lovely man. I met him at a dinner towards the end of last
year and he was in really good form. He was as friendly as ever. It is sad
news for his family and also sad for the game of football. He will be much
"Sir Bobby Robson was a worthy title for the man. I have nothing but respect
for him. I had many good club managers but I was proud to say I played under
him. Sir Alf Ramsey won the World Cup with England but Sir Bobby was right
up there with him. He was penalty kicks away from the final in 1990. He was
a wonderful manager, a great coach, but above everything else, he was a
West Ham United CEO Scott Duxbury added: "On behalf of everyone at the club,
many of whom like myself have fond personal memories of Sir Bobby, I would
like to send my sincere condolences to his family and friends. He gave so
much to the game and his personality and professionalism should be an
inspiration to us all."
Hammers finish on a high
Goals from Danny Gabbidon and Zavon Hines see off Beijing Guoan at the
Barclays Asia Trophy
Beijing Guoan 0-2 West Ham United
Danny Gabbidon and Zavon Hines struck to ensure West Ham United secured
third place at the Barclays Asia Trophy with a 2-0 win over Beijing Guoan.
Gabbidon rose highest to meet Mark Noble's corner ten minutes from time
before substitute Hines added a second at the death to give a much-improved
West Ham a deserved victory at the Workers Stadium.
Gianfranco Zola made five changes to the team that narrowly lost 1-0 to
Tottenham Hotspur in the semi-finals on Wednesday. Jonathan Spector, James
Tomkins, Noble and Scott Parker, who was handed the captain's armband, all
made their first starts of the pre-season, while Gabbidon came back into the
starting XI. Matthew Upson, James Collins, Julien Faubert, injury-victim
Luis Boa Morte and Junior Stanislas made way.
Beijing, who sit top of the Chinese Super League, had already sent a squad
of 13 players away for their Sunday Chinese Super League game in Chonqing,
and named an entirely new side for the match from the one beaten by Hull
City in the semi-finals.
Before the action got underway at the Workers Stadium a minute's silence was
held in memory of Sir Bobby Robson, who passed away on Friday morning after
a long battle with cancer. Both teams wore black armbands as a mark of
respect for the former England manager and no doubt the silence would have
been particularly poignant for Dyer, who played under Robson for five years
at Newcastle United.
After a couple of long-range efforts from Beijing in the opening five
minutes, the visitors began to stamp their authority on the game. A neat
passing move involving Herita Ilunga, Parker and Dyer saw the latter try to
flick a ball on for Ilunga to chase. The covering defender could only bring
the DR Congo left-back down and Luis Jimenez came close to registering his
first goal for his new club with a powerful, curling free-kick that Zhang
Sipeng held at the second attempt.
Once West Ham had found their feet, Beijing rarely troubled Robert Green in
the West Ham goal and only had two real chances in the opening half. The
first, a half-chance that Paulo Vogt blasted over, fell on 20 minutes, while
the second was a low drive from Wang Ke that Green got down quickly to
After several marginal offside decisions went against them, West Ham thought
they had taken the lead four minutes before half time when Dyer slotted the
ball inside the far post from Collison's pass. However, once more the
referee's assistant's flag was raised to deny the visitors.
Beijing made two changes at the break with Victor coming on up front and Li
Tixiang entering the fray in midfield.
In the warm and sticky conditions the Hammers toiled after the break but
once again forced themselves onto their opponents and enjoyed much of the
ball in the opening exchanges. With Dyer getting forward in support of Cole,
West Ham carried the far greater threat, although they did have to survive a
minor scare when Wang looped a long-range volley narrowly over the bar seven
minutes after the re-start.
Five minutes later and another promising burst forward by Dyer won West Ham
a corner as they sought to turn the screw on their hosts. Guoan's cause was
not helped by an injury to Park, who was replaced by Lang Zheng, while
captain Sui and Wang went off for Kou and Sun Kaj. Zola made his first
change with Bondz N'Gala coming at left back for Herita Ilunga.
Understandably, the rhythm of the game suffered slightly as a result of the
changes, but West Ham continued to have the better of the possession with
Dyer and Collison on either flank looking particularly threatening.
The Londoners' move of the match came on 69 minutes when Noble's ball
forward was flicked into Dyer's path by Cole. The winger returned the favour
by laying the ball back into the England forward's path, only for the
striker to be denied the opening goal by a last-ditch tackle.
Junior Stanislas was introduced in place of Collison to add yet more pace to
West Ham's attack and the England Under-20 international almost made his
mark from Noble's pass, but his shot is deflected wide. Zola then made two
further changes with Zavon Hines and Josh Payne coming on for Jimenez and
Zola's side finally got their reward ten minutes from the end as Gabbidon
muscled himself away from his marker to meet Noble's flighted corner and
direct a header past Sipeng.
Having missed 18 months through injury, the Wales defender's goal was met
with a huge outpouring of celebration from his team-mates. It was a fitting
way to mark the former Hammer of the Year's return to action.
Savio and Jordan Spence were the final changes for West Ham in place of the
superb Dyer and industrious Noble, but it was another substitute, Hines, who
was to have the final say. The Jamaican, who had already seen a snap-shot
saved by the goalkeeper, raced onto a through-ball and finished neatly with
his left foot through Sipeng's legs.
After the frustration of losing to Tottenham Hotspur in Wednesday's
semi-final, West Ham's performance, particularly in the second half, will
have given Zola and the fans who have travelled over from the UK real
optimism ahead of the start of the Barclays Premier League season on 15
Kingstonian 0-3 West Ham XI
West Ham United's reserves continued their pre-season preparations with a
comfortable win at Kingsmeadow
Kingstonian v West Ham United XI
Friday 31 July
Kingstonian 0-3 West Ham United XI
90 min - Full time. The final whistle blows and both teams make their way
off the pitch. Alex Dyer will no doubt be delighted with the way his players
set about their task this evening. Although the game tapered off slightly in
the second half, there were several eye-catching performances throughout the
side. Nouble will get the headlines, but he ably supported by Edgar and
Montano while Fry and Eyjolfsson were superb at the back.
89 min - The fans are waiting by the tunnel with their autograph books out
hoping to get the signatures of a few future stars here. I do not think they
will be waiting too long as Mr. Lymer has already checked his watch once.
88 min - We are into the last few minutes here now and, barring a stunning
comeback, it looks as though Nouble's double will have helped this West Ham
XI to their second consecutive away-day win.
84 min - We lose another ball, but this time I cannot fault the player. Good
defending from Mc Naughton sees him stop a Kingstonian attack in its tracks
but the ball rolls back to Dilloway eight yards out. The left back strikes
the ball cleanly but his shot clears not just the goal but the stand as
80 min - It must be an expensive exercise running a non-league club as we
must have lost at least three footballs out of the ground tonight. The
latest vanished after a wayward cross from Cook flies out of the stadium.
75 min - There has been some lovely keep-ball by West Ham in the last ten
minutes and if the home fans sitting around me are anything to go by, they
have made a good impression on the locals.
72 min - Well the Hammers may need a few more minutes to settle now as they
make three more changes. Street leaves the field to be replaced by trialist
Plazzi, while out on pitch Simone Bezzicheri and Ahmed Abdulla have all come
on with Nouble and Eyjolfsson making way.
70 min - I think, and I am tempting fate, that should be all the substitutes
from the home side now. Hopefully West Ham can settle once more and put
Kingstonian's new goalkeeper under some pressure.
67 min - Four more change for the home side with Gerrard, Lampton, Pearce
and Wilson-Denis heading off and Josh Willis, Christian Jolley, Scott
Simpson and Reggie Savage coming on to replace them.
64 min - Darkness has well and truly fallen on Kingsmeadow now and the
floodlights are lighting up the night sky. I am telling you this as we have
a break while Eyjolfsson is down after a knock to the head.
61 min - Changes for both sides here. Nick Barrettt, Daniel Kearns and
Andrea Zola have come on with Brookes, Lee and Grasser making way. The home
side introduce Josh Willis and Luke Pigden for Liam Collins and Lewis Coke.
60 min - So close! After some fancy footwork from Edgar on the edge of the
area, the ball is rolled to Quashie, who takes one touch and drills it
against the upright from 25 yards. So close for the West Ham captain.
58 min - We have 810 fans inside Kingsmeadow tonight and they have been
making plenty of noise. The visitors seem very well represented with plenty
of 'Come on you Irons' heard throughout the game so far. Nouble also seems
to have quickly become a crowd favourite.
56 min - Two changes for the home side as Jamie Beer and Ryan Lake leave the
field for Tom Dilloway and Scott Sheridan.
50 min - It seems to be that as soon as West Ham score a goal, Kingstonian
come very close to getting one back. This time a rasping shot from Tommy
Williams, who I am told used to date Eastenders actress Michelle Ryan, flies
inches over the crossbar,
48 min - GOAL! Well if his first was all down to skill, I think even Nouble
would admit that his second had more than a slice of luck to it. The West
Ham No9 seized on a calamitous mix-up between Gerrard and Duku to roll the
ball into an empty net. A gift for the Hammers.
48 min - A rare forray forward by Tony Brookes sees him play a delightful
cross that is just inches away from being turned in by Montano.
47 min - It does not look like we have had any changes at the break so far.
I must say I cannot blame Alex Dyer, whose side were superb in the first
46 min - Nouble and Edgar get the second period underway.
All of West Ham United's substitutes are warming up during the interval. One
addition to the bench is James Plazzi, who was not listed among the original
replacements. Will Dyer be calling him or any of the others into action when
the game re-starts?
45 min - Mr Lymer blows up dead on 45 minutes and the teams leave the field
for the break. A great first half from Dyer's side the reserve-team manager
should not have too much to say to his men in the dressing room.
44 min - Another corner for the home side which once more looks for Pearce
but Fry gets up to clear the ball. It has to be said that West Ham's two
young central defenders have dealt with the 35-year-old's physical presence
admirably this evening considering the height and size they give away to
40 min - A clever through ball from Lee presents Edgar with a sight of goal.
He takes slightly too long to get his shot away and the angle is narrowed by
Gerrard enough to enable him to smother the No10's shot.
36 min - A bit of handbags there between Fry and Pearce as they tussle for a
corner. The home side win another flag-kick shortly after and only a superb
diving save stops Pearce's header creeping into the far corner.
33 min - The K's are not giving in here though, despite West Ham looking
like they could score with every attack. A deep ball in from the left is
headed behind by Fry and from the resulting corner Lampton places his header
straight into the turf and it bounces over Street's crossbar.
29 min - GOAL! And what a goal it is too. The Kingstonian defence are
struggling to live with Nouble at the moment and he simply powered his way
past Duku into the penalty area before smashing the ball low past Gerrard.
Brilliant play from the new signing.
28 min - Screams for a penalty from the home support as NJ Lampton jumps
over Fry's late tackle. In all fairness it would have been a soft spot kick
to give and referee Colin Lymer correctly waves away their appeals.
27 min - Kingstonian have not let the goal affect their play though and
Street has to be alert once more to dive at the feet of Carl Wilson-Denis
just as the forward seemed poised to score.
24 min - Edgar is just a few feet away from doubling the lead as he darts
past two defenders before unleashing a venomous right-footed drive that has
Gerrard scrambling across his goal. Luckily for him, it flies just wide.
22 min - GOAL! Matt Fry gives West Ham the lead from six yards out. Edgar
had been fouled on the left and he picked himself up to whip in a delicious
free-kick which Fry simply had to steer past Gerrard from close range. It is
nothing less than the Hammers deserve from their start here.
20 min - Good goalkeeping from Adam Street as he gives Eyjolfsson a big
shout to leave the ball as Pearce lurks once more. The young Canadian comes
out to comfortably take the ball and the danger is averted.
17 min - Just a bit of housekeeping for you. Tony Brookes is playing
right-back with Fry and Holmar Eyjolfsson in the middle and Brown on the
left. Quashie, Olly Lee and Grasser are all playing in a central midfield
role with Edgar and Montano just in front of them. Nouble has been tasked
with leading the line and, thus far, he has done a superb job.
15 min - More good work from Nouble to force a corner on the right-hand
side. Georg Grasser, who was with the first team last week in Austria,
floats it in but Matt Fry can only direct his header into the stand behind
Gerrard's goal. Dyer's side are certainly on top here.
12 min - And just as I type that Nouble so nearly gives the visitors the
lead as he powers a left footed shot at goal from just inside the area,
which Luke Gerrard does well to parry. Seconds later, the Kingstonian
captain is called into action again as Montano tests him an almost identical
11 min - Good work from Nouble on the left-hand touchline as he uses his
power and pace to get away from Franci Duku. The Kingstonian No5 could be in
for a busy night if Nouble's performance last week is anything to go by.
8 min - Kingstonian seem to be looking to use the height of Pearce whenever
possible and the forward - it does feel slightly weird typing that - rises
high above left back Jordan Brown to get another header at goal.
5 min - West Ham look to have come out in a 4-3-3 formation with Frank
Nouble leading the line and Anthony Edgar and Cristian Montano, who had
received high praise from Dyer after the 3-2 win at Thurrock a week ago,
providing the width from midfield.
4 min - Pearce was often used as a makeshift striker for West Ham and it
looks like that is now his favoured position as he is sporting the No9 shirt
for the hosts.
2 min - The home side go on the attack straight away and it is a familiar
face that poses the first threat to the Hammers' goal. Ian Pearce, in his
second game for his new team, rises high to meet a right-wing cross but can
only head high and wide.
1 min - Kingstonian get us underway.
7.45pm - Nigel Quashie leads the two teams out to rapturous applause but
that quickly turns to sudden silence on the sound of the referee's whistle
as the whole stadium observes a minute's tribute to Sir Bobby Robson, who
passed away earlier today.
Good evening and welcome to Kingsmeadow for tonight's pre-season match
between a West Ham United XI and Kingstonian.
Alex Dyer's West Ham United XI continue their build-up to the Barclays
Premier Reserve League South season with a trip to Ryman League Premier
Division side Kingstonian.
With the first-team squad away in China at the Barclays Asia Trophy, Dyer
has a young side at his disposal. However, captain Nigel Quashie will add
experience to the lineup.
Canada Under-20 goalkeeper Adam Street, Iceland U21 defender Holmar Orn
Eyjolfsson and new signing Frank Nouble will be eager to impress, while
Georg Grasser, Olly Lee, Anthony Edgar and Cristian Montano have all been in
good form in pre-season.
Kingstonian could present a stiff test for Dyer's team, having won the Ryman
League Division One South title in 2008/09.
West Ham United XI: Street, Brookes, Eyjolfsson, Fry, Brown, Grasser, Lee,
Quashie, Edgar, Nouble, Montano
Subs: Loveday, McNaughton, Zola, Barrett, Bezzicherri, James Plazzi, Kearns,
Kingstonian: Gerrard, Beer, Lake, Williams, Duku, Hustwick, Lampton,
Collins, Pearce, Wilson-Denis, Cook
Subs: Willis, Pigden, Coke, Dilloway, Sheridan, Simpson, Jolley
Creating Chances in China
West Ham United have been flying the flag for the Premier League's
West Ham United have played a major part in a Premier League initiative to
support grassroots football in Beijing that culminated in a Community
The club's Community Sports Trust CEO Mick King and Rashid Abba, who had the
prestigious role of head coach for the week-long Creating Chances programme,
were key to the significant success of an event that also involved Hull City
and Tottenham Hotspur. It was staged daily at the Changping Sports Bureau in
the Chinese capital since last Friday.
Abba was assisted by club community coaches Kate Holmes and Jonny Wright,
and the work they did alongside the other Premier League representatives
proved hugely popular with the 44 physical education teachers and 96
children from Beijing who took part.
King was proud of the their contribution. "The coaches performed tirelessly
in their delivery of quality coaching," he said. "They have left a lasting
impression on the young people that they coached by improving their levels
of enthusiasm and knowledge of football.
"They have been outstanding ambassadors for the club and the game. Their
commitment has accelerated the learning process of the participants, leaving
behind them inspired young footballers who will never forget the club that
travelled 5,000 miles to coach them."
With Abba leading the way, daily developmental sessions were held under the
Premier Skills banner along with the Creating Chances community programme
for 10-13-year-old children. Both have been held in tandem with the Beijing
Football Association with the aim of leaving a lasting legacy behind.
Abba said: This has been a very successful project. The pupils have attended
every single day without fail. What we've been teaching the young children
is the basics of football. So we've taught them how to pass, dribble and
shoot the ball. In between the sessions we delivered question and answer
On Thursday, first-team players Jonathan Spector, Jack Collison, Junior
Stanislas and Josh Payne took time out from their schedule to lend their
support, as did former players Tony Gale and Tony Cottee. They got involved
in the sessions as well as speaking to the international media that had
gathered for the Community Festival, which was also attended by Premier
League Chief Executive Richard Scuadamore and Premier Skills head coach
Spector said: "It is great to be involved with the club's community work and
see what the Premier League have been doing here in China. It is nice to see
such a big turnout of young children. It looked like they were all having a
good time which is the most important thing.
"The children are very good listeners. The language barrier is difficult and
it is hard to understand each other but the translators have been very
helpful. The most important thing is for the children to enjoy themselves
and the game. It is such a wonderful sport. It is something that I love to
do and hopefully they will take much away from the experience."
WHUIFC wants talent
A West Ham United supporters' team is looking for new players for the coming
A football team made up of West Ham United supporters is looking for new
players for the 2009/10 season. West Ham United IFC, who play their home
matches at Flanders in East Ham, is made up entirely of West Ham United
season-ticket holders. The team regularly meet up with supporters' teams
from other clubs on matchday mornings for a game, with the fixtures
generally corresponding with the games the West Ham first team play.
The club has been around since 1996, forming after fans on internet message
boards suggested meeting up for a game. Since then they have gone from
strength to strength and will go into the season on a high after being voted
iFA team of the season and reaching the semi-finals at a recent nationwide
Assistant manager Vincent White says they are looking for players who can
help improve the team. He said: "It's a good standard of football and we
really want to attract players of that calibre to come and join us.
"We play our home games at Flanders in East Ham and typically we'll kick-off
at 10.30am on a matchday, which gives players time to get where they want to
For more information or to register your interest, please email Vincent at
West Ham United 2-0 Beijing Guoan
All the action as the Hammers tackled Beijing Guoan at the Barclays Asia
Barclays Asia Trophy
West Ham United v Beijing Guoan
Workers Stadium, Beijing
Friday 31 July
Referee: Baojie Sun
Full-time - West Ham United 2-0 Beijing Guoan
94 min - The final whistle goes and West Ham confirm third-place in the
Barclays Asia Trophy.
93 min - GOAL! West Ham finish on a high courtesy of Zavon Hines. The
Jamaican sprang the offside trap and streaked clear of the Beijing defence
before poking the ball through the goalkeeper's legs with his left foot.
Good stuff from the 20-year-old.
92 min - An anxious time for West Ham as Guoan force a late corner, but the
ball is cleared.
90 min - I was wrong about the substitutions. Jordan Spence is on for Mark
Noble. We're going to have three added minutes. With Scott Parker off the
pitch, Rob Green has taken over as captain for the final few minutes.
89 min - Cole sets Savio free down the right. He cuts into the box and his
cross is dropped by the goalkeeper Sipeng and drops to Hines, but the
defender was able to get in a challenge and the ball loops over the
88 min - Payne is booked for a rather late challenge on the No31. The
resulting free-kick is launched almost into space by Fei.
85 min - Kieron Dyer has done well today and his work is at an end. Savio is
his replacement. Unless Zola wants to give Robert Green a rest, that is it
for West Ham's replacement-wise!
84 min - Beijing haven't given this up just yet and a cross into the box
ends with the No37 Tixiang dragging a shot wide of the near post. West Ham
break and a loose header gives Hines a shooting chance, but his first-time
attempt is straight at the goalkeeper.
82 min - A great chance for Dyer to double West Ham's lead, but he delays
his shot and the defender gets in to block.
80 min - GOAL! Noble launches a right-wing corner into the danger zone and
Gabbidon looses his marker before powering a header just inside the near
post. The goal is greeted with a big celebration from the West Ham players.
Gabbidon has had a horrendous time with injuries, so everyone in the
dressing room will be delighted for the Wales defender.
79 min - Two more substitutions from Zola. Jimenez is off and Zavon Hines is
on, while Parker is replaced by Josh Payne.
78 min - Noble crosses and Stanislas tries to get a shot in, but the ball
rolls behind for a corner.
77 min - Bryan is replaced by No31 Hu Qiling.
76 min - While West Ham haven't looked that potent up front, Gabbidon and
Tomkins have looked very assured at the back.
75 min - Cole chests down Noble's pass, but Stanislas does not react quickly
enough to burst through the home defence.
74 min - Green goes in bravely to gather a curling cross before being bumped
by a Guoan player.
72 min - A second change from Zola. Collison is replaced by Junior
Stanislas. His pace and trickery could conjure an opening for the visitors.
71 min - The ball just won't break for West Ham inside the Guoan box.
Parker's touch lets him down from Collison's cross and the England
midfielder is then penalised for a high boot.
69 min - Noble finds Cole, who instantly releases Dyer with a neat flick.
The midfielder cuts the ball back to the England striker but his shot is
blocked. Good football there.
68 min - The spectre of penalties is growing ever larger...
67 min - Sun has a speculative effort from 30 yards out that has Green
scrambling, but the ball lands on top of the net.
66 min - West Ham make their first change in personnel. Bondz N'Gala is on
for Ilunga. The big man is going to slot in at left-back.
65 min - Cole and Jimenez combine to find Collison. The Wales midfielder
rolls the ball to the Chilean, but his shot rolls wide of the far post.
63 min - Vitor robs Noble and runs at the West Ham defence. He shoots from
25 yards but it is blocked.
62 min - Yet another change for Guoan. Wang is replaced by No42 Sun Kaj. I'm
struggling to keep up with all these substitutions...
60 min - Another change for Guoan. No41 Kou is on for skipper Sui. The
corner is cleared. Half-an-hour to go here in Beijing.
59 min - Guoan win a free-kick about 40 yards from goal. Captain Sui has a
dig but it is blocked and rolls through to Green. West Ham break and
Collison forces another corner.
57 min - That was a good chance for West Ham. Dyer bursts on to a through
pass and gets into the box, but he delays his cross and the ball is blocked
behind. Park is replaced by No2 Lang Zheng. Tomkins heads the corner over
56 min - Guoan's No40 Park goes down after appearing to catch his studs in
the turf. He is hobbling and is going to be replaced.
54 min - A chance goes begging. Cole gets in behind the Guoan defence and
goalkeeper, but is pushed wide. He lays the ball to Jimenez, but the ball is
51 min - Wang tries to beat Green with an audacious volley from 30 yards but
the ball lands on top of the net.
49 min - No sign of a goal just yet. If the game ends goalless then we will
have a penalty shoot-out.
46 min - We're off and running again...
The second half is rapidly approaching and the Guoan players have a huddle
before breaking and getting ready to kick-off. Guoan have made a couple of
changes. No9 Vitor is on for Vogt, while the No37 Li Tixiang is on on the
right side of midfield.
While you relax with a half-time cup of tea, here is some more information
about Beijing Guoan. They were formed in 1992 following a restructuring of
the Chinese Super League. In 2003, they were renamed Beijing Hyundai Motor
Football Team after signing a sponsorship deal, but reverted back to Guoan
in 2006. They have won the Chinese title seven times and their biggest
rivals are Tianjin Teda.
Half-time - West Ham United 0-0 Beijing Guoan
47 min - West Ham have a chance to score right at the end of the half, but
neither Jimenez nor Parker are able to get a shot away and the chance is
lost. Seconds later, the half-time whistle is blown by Baojie Sun.
45 min - Guoan win a corner wide on the left. Wang takes with his right
foot, but it is too deep and Tomkins flicks the ball out for a throw-in with
43 min - West Ham are finishing the half strongly here.
42 min - Dyer has the ball in the back of the net courtesy of a neat finish,
but again the assistant referee has his flag raised. It was a close one, but
he may have been just offside. The opening had been created following good
work by Collison to win the ball from a Guoan defender.
40 min - Bryan is back into the fray after a quick drink. Ilunga and Jimenez
combine outside the Guoan penalty area but Dyer is again caught offside.
38 min - Something out of nothing from Cole, who collects the ball 30 yards
from goal and spins before unleashing a low shot that tests Sipeng. The
goalkeeper dives to his right and holds the ball with relative ease. Up the
other end and Bryan is caught by Tomkins and the stretcher-bearers are
called into action again.
36 min - A bit more information about the lively Wang. He was once part of
the same youth team as Kaka at the Brazilian club Sao Paolo.
35 min - Park and Cole are both back on the pitch.
34 min - Cole and Park are hurt in an aerial challenge. The Chinese player
is stretchered off with what looked like a knee injury, but he is straight
up again on the touchline. Cole is also treated by physio Andy Rolls and
takes the opportunity to have a quick drink.
33 min - The Guoan right winger Wang Ke looks like a threat every time he
gets the ball at his feet, but his final ball has sometimes been lacking.
32 min - News from Edgbaston and the Ashes. Australia are 155-3. Back here,
Cole and Jimenez try to combine inside the penalty area, but are thwarted by
the Guoan defence.
31 min - Mark Noble wins a corner. It is taken short to Dyer, but his low
shot is blocked and the ball is cleared.
29 min - We're approaching the half-hour mark and Wang works Green again,
cutting inside Ilunga and shooting low at the goalkeeper with his left foot.
26 min - West Ham throw a few bodies forward and keep the ball for more than
30 seconds, but Spector's cross is caught by Sipeng with Cole threatening.
25 min - Guoan win a controversial corner. It looked like Robert Green
easily caught the loose ball within the goalline. No matter as Gabbidon
clears the corner.
23 min - Dyer tries to beat the offside trap and get on to Scott Parker's
through ball. He looked onside when the ball was played, but the flag went
21 min - Vogt is penalised for handball. The 32-year-old Brazilian has
previously turned out for clubs in Switzerland and Liechtenstein and spent
last season in Ukraine at APEP Pitsilia.
20 min - Vogt has another shot on the turn, but it flies well over the
19 min - As well as the noisy home supporters, there are plenty of West Ham
fans here too. I can see flags representing the Leighton Buzzard and Norwich
17 min - West Ham have a sustained period of possession here, but they can't
find a way through the Guoan rearguard just yet.
15 min - Vogt tries to play in Bryan. Tomkins tracks the Nigerian's run and
clears the ball to safety.
14 min - A slight worry for Cole as he collides with Sipeng and is rubbing
his right hip. He's up without receiving any treatment and back into the
13 min - West Ham get numbers into the Guoan penalty area. Dyer crosses
towards Cole, but the ball is cleared.
12 min - Guoan No43 Paulo Vogt turns away from his marker and shoots from 25
yards, but the ball barely reaches the goal.
10 min - Luis Jimenez curls a well-struck free-kick around the wall from the
left-hand edge of the penalty area, but it is safely gathered by Zhang
9 min - West Ham are struggling to get their passing game going here on what
is a lush playing surface. They finally do so as Parker and Dyer combine.
The latter slips the ball through for Ilunga to run on to, but the DR Congo
man is felled just outside the penalty area.
7 min - Despite making a number of changes to their lineup, Guoan are giving
this a good go. Wang has a shot from at least 40 yards, but it flies
harmlessly wide of the target.
5 min - Parker gives the ball away in midfield and allows Paulo Vogt a
shooting chance. The ball hits Gabbidon and leaves Green wrong-footed, but
thankfully it drifts wide of the post. The resulting corner is cleared by a
combination of Cole and Gabbidon. Cole appears to have caught Park Chulwoo
with his boot and the Guoan defender receives some attention.
4 min - A cross from the right from Wang is knocked out for a corner by
Gabbidon. Xue Fe crosses and Carlton Cole heads the ball clear.
3 min - It is encouraging to see Luis Boa Morte sitting on the bench with
his team-mates and the coaching staff. The Portuguese is a popular member of
2 min - Guoan No17 Wang cuts inside on his left foot and shoots, but his
tame effort is easily gathered by Green.
1 min - Carlton Cole kicks off and West Ham are first to show against a
Guoan team showing eleven changes from Wednesday's semi-final. A Danny
Gabbidon back-pass nearly causes Robert Green some embarrassment as he
attempts to hack the ball clear and loses his footing.
6.01pm - Scott Parker and his opposite number Sui Dongliang exchange
pennants before referee Baojie Sun tosses the coin. West Ham will kick-off.
5.58pm - News of Sir Bobby Robson's death has been announced here. The
thoughts of everyone at West Ham United are with his family and friends at
this sad time. Both sides will wear black armbands and a minute's silence
will be held prior to kick-off in his honour.
5.55pm - Kick-off is rapidly approaching here at the Workers Stadium, and
the home fans are making plenty of noise. Can West Ham sign-off their visit
to China with a victory and silence them in the process?
5.47pm - Beijing Guoan have made a number of changes from the team that
pushed Hull so hard, as they have a long away trip to Chinese Super League
bottom side Chongqing Lifan on Sunday. Guoan are a point clear at the top of
the 16-team table.
5.38pm - Some confusion over the West Ham team. James Tomkins is starting
and not Matthew Upson. Apologies for that.
5.30pm - Four changes from the semi-final defeat tonight. Jonathan Spector,
Danny Gabbidon, Mark Noble and Scott Parker are in for Julien Faubert, James
Collins, Luis Boa Morte and Junior Stanislas. Again, the remaining members
of the Hammers squad are all on the bench, with six substitutes allowed, one
of which must be a goalkeeper.
5.25pm - It is hot and extremely humid here in Beijing tonight. This will be
a test for West Ham against a fit and organised Guoan side who got stronger
as their semi-final against Hull went on.
Good evening from the Workers Stadium in Beijing.
West Ham United will be eager to finish their Barclays Asia Trophy campaign
with a win over Beijing Guoan after being beaten 1-0 in their semi-final
against Tottenham Hotspur. Guoan were themselves beaten 5-4 on penalties
following a 1-1 draw with Hull City.
West Ham manager Gianfranco Zola has named a strong side again for today's
game at a sweltering Workers Stadium. Only Luis Boa Morte, who injured his
knee against Spurs, is unavailable.
A little bit of information about today's opponents. Guoan were formed as
recently as 1992 and compete in the Chinese Super League. They finished
third last season.
West Ham United: Green, Spector, Tomkins, Gabbidon, Ilunga (N'Gala 66), Dyer
(Savio 85), Noble (Spence 90), Parker, (Payne 79) Collison (Stanislas 72),
Jimenez (Hines 79), Cole
Subs: Kurucz, Stech, Upson, Collins, Faubert
Beijing Guoan: Sipeng, Shuang, Chulwoo (Lang 57), De Brito, Pu, Ke (Kaj 62),
Yifan, Dongliang (Kou 60), Fei, Bryan (Hu 77), Vogt (Vitor 46)
Subs: Zhiang, Modibo, Wang, Martinez, Zhang, Tixiang
Filed: Friday, 31st July 2009
By: Staff Writer
West Ham have confirmed the capture of 18-year-old Swiss full back Fabio
Daprela. The ambitious under 19 international finally completed his move to
United today following the successful competion of a medical and told
whufc.com: "I am very happy to come here as it is a great club. They have a
great manager and it is good to be here. "I want to play for the first team
in the Premier League. I think I can learn a lot from the manger and people
like Matthew Upson and Mark Noble and I am really looking forward to the
The former Grasshoppers defender, who was a member of last year's first team
squad leaves the Zurich-based club with whom he was entering the final year
of his contract. The fee, thought to be nominal, is undisclosed. The Hammers
will now turn their attention to first team targets, with a new striker
still the main priority.
Tributes to Sir Bobby
Filed: Friday, 31st July 2009
By: Staff Writer
Kieron Dyer has expressed his sadness at the passing of former England
manager Sir Bobby Robson, who died earlier today. Dyer - who played under
Robson at Newcastle but shared a special link through their previous spells
at Ipswich Town - revealed that he discovered the news just before West
Ham's Asia Trophy match with Beijing Guoan earlier today. "I was told five
minutes before kick-off so that was a shock to the system," said Dyer. "He
had beaten cancer so many times, I thought he would go on into his 100s -
but it wasn't to be. He was a massive influence in my career - not just on
the pitch but also off the pitch. "Off the pitch he treated me like a son.
We had the Ipswich connection so when he was at Newcastle he made a beeline
straight for me. He was like a father figure to me and I am going to miss
him. "At the minute's silence it did overwhelm me. I am just going to look
at all the great memories he brought to my life and all the special bits,
like in team talks when he used to call me Kevin because he would forget
names! "Hopefully back home, instead of a minute's silence they have a
standing ovation with a minute's clapping to celebrate his life because what
he brought to the game of football is phenomenal."
Dyer's comments were choed by Irons boss Gianfranco Zola, who added: "He is
a man I respected very much. He was always positive and always smiling. He
has been a great ambassador for football in general and I pay my respects to
him. "He is a big loss."
Beijing Guoan 0 West Ham Utd 2
Filed: Friday, 31st July 2009
By: Staff Writer
West Ham ended their trip to China with a win against locan side Beijing
Guoan at the Worker's Stadium this morning. Late goals from Danny Gabbidon
and Zavon Hines ensured the Hammers won this third place play off against a
second string Guoan side, who had sent most of their first team players home
in preparation for a vital league fixture this weekend. United started the
game in similar fashion to Wednesday's disappointing defeat gainst
Tottenham, but were fully deserved winners following a strong second half
performance. However Gianfranco Zola's side had to wait until the 80th
minute to break the deadlock when Danny Gabbidon nodded home a Mark Noble
corner. A deep cross was strongly headed back towards the bottom right hand
corner by thwe Welsh centre half, playing his second successive game since
returning from injury. The win was wrapped up in the third minute of injury
time when substitute Hines, on as a 79th minute replacement for Luis Jimenez
picked up a through ball some 40 yards from goal before finishing expertly
between the keeper's legs. The Hammers return to England later this weekend
with just one more game planned before the start of the new Premier League
season - that being against Napoli at the Boleyn eight days from now.
Hammers land Daprela
Swiss defender completes Premier League switch
By Chris Burton Last updated: 31st July 2009
West Ham have announced the signing of Swiss starlet Fabio Daprela for an
undisclosed fee. The teenage defender arrives from Grasshopper Club Zurich
and has penned a five-year contract. Daprela has recently been competing in
the European U19 Championships and flew into England direct from that
tournament to complete the deal. A number of top Italian sides were reported
to be tracking his progress, but it is the Hammers who have secured his
signature. "I am very happy to come here as it is a great club," Daprela
told West Ham's official website. "I saw the team play on television last
season and it is a very good team. They have a great manager and it is good
to be here. "I want to play for the first-team in the Premier League. I
think I can learn a lot from the manager and people like Matthew Upson and
Mark Noble. "I am really looking forward to the season starting."
Hammers end on a high
Gabbidon and Hines seal unconvincing win
Last updated: 31st July 2009
West Ham rounded off their trip to China with a 2-0 victory over Beijing
Guoan in the Asia Trophy on Friday. Late efforts from Danny Gabbidon and
Zavon Hines helped the Hammers seal third place in the Far East tournament,
but there is much to work to be done by the Premier League side ahead of the
new season. Gianfranco Zola's side made a positive start to proceedings, but
were all often pegged back by a lively Beijing attacking unit. West Ham did
enjoy plenty of possession, but found lone frontman Carlton Cole isolated on
too many occasions. Kieron Dyer looked the most likely to link up with the
England striker, but he was haunted by the assistant referee's flag. He did
get the ball in the net as the first half came to a close, with a smart
finish from a tight angle, but he was adjudged to have strayed offside for
the umpteenth time. The Hammers continued to make little progress throughout
the second period, despite the game opening up as tired legs began to tell.
Dyer's willingness to get forward will have pleased Zola, but his front line
looked toothless in truth. In the end it was left to centre-half Gabbidon to
put West Ham en route to success as he rose highest to meet a Mark Noble
corner 10 minutes from time. With Beijing piling men forward, Hines was then
allowed to race clear in stoppage time to put the seal on a satisfying, but
GIFT OF THE GAB 1/08/2009
West Ham 2 BEIJING GUOAN 0
WEST HAM delivered a late onetwo to see off Beijing Guoan in the third place
play-off match of the Asia Trophy. Danny Gabbidon headed home in the 80th
minute and substitute Zavon Hines added a second in injury time. Carlton
Cole forced a good first-half save from Zhang. Cole cleverly sent Kieron
Dyer clear but the home defence recovered just in time to deny the former
Newcastle midfielder. The Hammers opened the scoring when Gabbidon broke
free of his marker to send a towering header in from Mark Noble's corner.
Their second goal came when Hines sprinted clear of the defence before
firing home a low shot.
Gudmundsson declared bankrupt
1 August 2009 | 09:10 - AAP
The World Game
Bjorgolfur Gudmundsson, the former owner and chairman of English Premier
League side West Ham United, has been declared bankrupt, an Icelandic court
ruled on Friday.
Judges in Reykjavik agreed with Gudmundsson's argument that he had no
reasonable expectation of any future income and did not have sufficient
assets to service his debts. "Reykjavik District court has today accepted
Bjorgolfur Gudmundssons request that his estate will be entered into
insolvency proceedings," his spokesman and former West Ham vice-chairman
Asgeir Fridgeirsson said in a statement. The 68-year-old, estimated last
year to be worth 1.1 billion dollars by the 2008 Forbes Rich List, snapped
up London side West Ham in 2006 for STG85 million ($A169.9million). But
court documents showed that the debt of his estate totalled just over 529
million euros ($A902.81million). Gudmundsson lost much of his fortune during
the recent global economic turmoil owing to his investments in two of
Iceland's major banks: Landsbanki and Straumur Burdaras Investment Bank.
Both were nationalised by the Icelandic government after they borrowed
beyond their means, effectively wiping out the stakes of shareholders. "I
now face almost complete lack of income as I am no longer in the employment
of the aforementioned companies and earn now just the minimum wage,"
Gudmundsson wrote in a letter to judges. Once the second-richest man in
Iceland, his plight forced him to put West Ham up for sale and the club was
acquired by asset management group CB Holding for a reported STG100 million
($A199.88million) in June. Once that sale was completed, Gudmundsson and
vice-chairman Asgeir Fridgeirsson both left the club.
Heartbroken Kieron Dyer mourns the death of Sir Bobby Robson
Hammers star says former boss was 'like a father'
The London Paper
by: Brad Ashton
31 July 2009
West Ham midfielder Kieron Dyer today expressed his sadness at the death of
Sir Bobby Robson, describing him as a father figure who had a massive impact
on his career.
Dyer began his career at Robson's former club Ipswich and had only just made
his £6.5m switch to Newcastle when the ex-England boss took over at St
James' Park in 1999. He was only told of his passing five minutes before the
Hammers' Barclays Asia Trophy clash with Beijing Guoan today. And the shock
proved too much for the England international as he broke down during the
minute's silence ahead of the game, before being comforted by team-mate
Carlton Cole. Dyer, 30, said: "Obviously he was a massive influence in my
career, not just on the pitch but also off the pitch. "I was told five
minutes before kick-off so that was a shock to the system. "He had beaten
cancer so many times I thought he would go on into his 100s but it wasn't to
be. "At the minutes silence it did overwhelm me. I am just going to look at
all the great memories he brought to my life and all the special bits, like
in team talks when he used to call me Kevin because he would forget names.
"Hopefully back home instead of a minute's silence they have a standing
ovation with a minute's clapping to celebrate his life because what he has
brought to the game of football is phenomenal. "Off the pitch he treated me
like a son. We had the Ipswich connection so when he was at Newcastle he
made a beeline straight for me. "He was like a father figure to me and I am
going to miss him."
Hammers boss Gianfranco Zola described Robson as a "great ambassador" for
football and believes his passing is a big loss to the game. "There are
wonderful memories," said the Italian. "He is a man I respected very much.
He was always positive and always smiling. "He has been a great ambassador
for football in general and I pay my respects to him. He is a big loss for
us." The Hammers beat Beijing Guoan 2-0 at Workers Stadium to secure third
place at the Asia Trophy. Danny Gabbidon and substitute Zavon Hines scored
inside the last ten minutes for the London club and Zola is confident his
side are heading in the right direction. "This is the third 'real' game that
we have played," he added. "The team is certainly on the way up, we played
better than we had at other games. "We are not at our best but we are
getting close to it."