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Jack Collison targets West Ham return after successful comeback from knee injury

West Ham's Collison targets first team return after successful comeback from injury

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UPDATED:

11:16 GMT, 18 December 2012

West Ham's Jack Collison is looking
'onwards and upwards' after making his first appearance since
the Championship play-off final.

The 24-year-old has had to watch the
Hammers' fine start to life back in the top flight from the sidelines
due to a long-standing knee problem.

Boost: Jack Collison came through 45 minutes of Under 21 match

Boost: Jack Collison came through 45 minutes of Under 21 match

Collison, who last featured for first team as they overcame Blackpool at Wembley back in May, stepped up his recovery from injury with the West Ham development squad at Norwich on Monday.

The Wales international came through 45 minutes of the 3-1 Barclays Under 21 Premier League defeat and could not hide his delight at returning.

'It was great to be back out there again,' Collison told the club's official website, www.whufc.com.

'I am obviously a little bit rusty, but I have ticked a box by completing 45 minutes and hopefully it will be onwards and upwards from there.

'I loved it. It was great to be playing football again, even though it was not the best conditions out there. I thought the boys did well and were unlucky to not to get a point out of it.'

Collison's return is a welcome boost to injury-hit West Ham, who are without the likes of Mohamed Diame, Ricardo Vaz Te and Yossi Benayoun.

He will not, though, pinpoint a date for his first-team return, focusing instead on continuing his rehabilitation.

'I will leave that for the manager to decide,' Collison said.

'I have obviously been out for quite a while so for me it is all about building up my fitness and getting that sharpness back.

'I am not sure whether the reserves will have any more games or have arranged any friendlies [before the Elite Group Stage starts in January] but I will be training more now so hopefully I can return as quickly as possible.'

Mohamed Diame injury latest: West Ham manager Sam Allardyce rues midfielder"s loss

It's a crushing blow: Hammers boss Big Sam rues 12-week Diame loss

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UPDATED:

13:04 GMT, 10 December 2012

West Ham manager Sam Allardyce has described Mohamed Diame’s injury as a ‘crushing blow’ for his club.

The Senegal international was carried off on a stretcher during the club’s 3-2 defeat by Liverpool on Sunday after pulling up near the touchline.

Blow: Mohamed Diame will be a big miss for West Ham in the next three months

Blow: Mohamed Diame will be a big miss for West Ham in the next three months

He will be out for up to 12 weeks with a
grade 3 hamstring tear. With the likes of Alou Diarra, Ricardo Vaz Te,
Jack Collison, Yossi Benayoun and Andy Carroll already out injured
Diame’s absence is a big loss to Allardyce.

Allardyce said: ‘We had a massive
blow when Momo Diame pulled up and had to come off because everything
good about us going forward was generally coming from Mo.

‘He was breaking behind Liverpool’s
midfield and it allowed the full backs, the wide men, Kevin Nolan and
Carlton Cole to get in the box. We could not cope after he went off, we
sat back too much and Liverpool punished us.

‘It is not just Mo Diame that is out
and it is not just two weeks that our players are out for, it has been a
crushing blow for us but we will continue to do our best with the
players we have available.’

Diame has been a key player for West Ham this season but was forced off after 73 minutes.

He had been central to the action before his injury and after his withdrawal Liverpool scored twice to take the three points.

Stretchered off: Diame is taken from the field for treatment

Stretchered off: Diame is taken from the field for treatment

Mohamed Diame has hamstring injury which could last 12 weeks

West Ham's key man Diame set for 12 weeks out after hamstring injury

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UPDATED:

19:24 GMT, 9 December 2012

West Ham boss Sam Allardyce is fearful he could be without midfielder Mohamed Diame for up to 12 weeks after he suffered a hamstring injury in the 3-2 defeat to Liverpool.

Diame has been a key player for West Ham this season but was forced off after 73 minutes.

He had been central to the action before his injury and after his withdrawal Liverpool scored twice to take the three points.

Blow: Mohamed Diame will be a big miss for West Ham in the next three months

Blow: Mohamed Diame will be a big miss for West Ham in the next three months

The Senegal international was stretchered from the pitch after pulling up near the touchline and Allardyce did not give a positive early prognosis.

'Not good, it does not take a medical expert to know it is a serious hamstring tear when he falls and stopped the way he did,' he said.

'I would expect, in medical terms, for it to be a grade 3 (injury) and that could be anything up to eight, 10 or 12 weeks.'

With the likes of Alou Diarra, Ricardo Vaz Te, Jack Collison, Yossi Benayoun and Andy Carroll already out injured Diame's absence is a big loss to Allardyce.

'For us he is about the start and build-up of most of the creative side of our game – he runs at them (defenders) with pace and ability that puts them on the back foot,' he said.

'That is what we have lost and what we will be missing for a number of weeks so we are going to have to be a bit more dogged and resilient with the players we have got available, rather than have the more creative side we have had from Mo.'

Diame's performances for the Hammers
have seen him linked with a number of clubs, especially given that he
has a release clause in his contract, but Allardyce reckons he would
rather deal with bids for his player in the transfer window than have
him sidelined.

'I would sooner have that aggravation
in January where people trying to get him than lose him for the period
of time, eight-12 weeks,' he said.

Stretchered off: Diame is taken from the field for treatment

Stretchered off: Diame is taken from the field for treatment

'In my experience, I have had a
number of hamstring injuries myself in my time, when you go down like
that you know you have really got (a bad) one.

'We will wait until it has settled
down and then scan it, we will find out exactly how big the damage is
and move on from there.'

Ricardo Vaz Te out for 12 weeks with dislocated shoulder

Hammer blow! Vaz Te out for 12 weeks with dislocated shoulder

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UPDATED:

19:51 GMT, 6 October 2012

West Ham forward Ricardo Vaz Te could be out for up to 12 weeks after suffering a dislocated shoulder in the 3-1 defeat to Arsenal.

The 26-year-old had to be replaced by Matt Taylor just after the hour-mark after falling awkwardly following a challenge with Arsenal goalkeeper Vito Mannone.

Hammers boss Sam Allardyce confirmed after the match that Vaz Te would not be fit to return until after the international break and could be out until the festive period.

Agony: Ricardo Vaz Te will miss the next 12 weeks with a dislocated shoulder

Agony: Ricardo Vaz Te will miss the next 12 weeks with a dislocated shoulder

'No he won't be right, it will be six to 12 weeks depending,' he said.

'We can't get it back so he is going to have to go to hospital to have an anaesthetic put in it to slot the shoulder back into the socket.

'The specialist will determine how long it will take to sort that out so it is a bit of a shame, but we all suffer injuries and we just have to make sure we use the squad we have got.'

James Tomkins blames London 2012 Olympics for losing West Ham place

I wasted my time at the Games: Tomkins blames Team GB for losing Hammers place

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UPDATED:

09:42 GMT, 3 October 2012

James Tomkins has blamed his decision to represent Team GB at London 2012 Olympics for costing him his place in the heart of the West Ham defence, saying that he 'wasted his time' at the Games.

The 23-year-old was an ever-present in the Hammers defence last season, helping them achieve promotion back to the Premier League at the first time of asking.

Stuart Pearce recognised his contribution and called him up – but the defender made only two appearances for Britain's squad.

Hammer time: James Tomkins hopes he can win back his place in the West Ham side after impressing against QPR

Hammer time: James Tomkins hopes he can win back his place in the West Ham side after impressing against QPR

The summer arrival of James Collins and the brilliant form of Winston Reid has since seen Tomkins cosigned to the Hammers substitutes bench, making only a single start in the league so far this season.

Tomkins hopes to win his place back for the visit of Arsenal at Upton Park this weekend after replacing Reid and setting-up Ricardo Vaz Te's winner in Monday's 2-1 win over QPR.

'It is always hard of course,' admitted Tomkins, speaking to London 24.

'I wanted to represent Great Britain and the manager gave me the chance to and I appreciated that.

'I went there expecting to play more than I did in the end, so obviously I wasted a lot of time and then Ginge [James Collins] and Reidy played a lot together in pre-season and the manager had his thoughts.

'It was disappointing for me, but I suppose that is what football is like. You have to keep your head down and keep working hard in training which I have.

'It paid off against QPR because I came on the pitch and did well.'

Wasted time: Tomkins believes his Team GB experience cost him his starting place at West Ham

Wasted time: Tomkins believes his Team GB experience cost him his starting place at West Ham

Tomkins is hoping his excellent performance at Loftus Road will propel him back into the thoughts of manager Sam Allardyce ahead of Saturday's televised London derby.

He came on for New Zealand international Reid early in the first half after the New Zealand international was carried off suffering a concussion following a collision with his own goalkeeper, Jussi Jaaskelainen.

Reid is expected to be given the all-clear to play against the Gunners but Tomkins remains hopeful he will start.

'I want to play more games and that is important to me,' he added.

'The lads have come in and done well in the back four, so obviously they haven’t changed it much.

'We have played teams around where we could finish and we have stepped up the challenge.

'Hopefully we can continue that and we are going to be positive going into the Arsenal game.

'It is frustrating to watch, but if we keep getting the results there is not much I can do.'

Andy Carroll eyes Arsenal start after West Ham return

Now bring on Arsenal! Fit-again Carroll raring to go after returning for West Ham

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UPDATED:

10:22 GMT, 2 October 2012

Andy Carroll is eyeing a starting role against Arsenal this weekend after making his comeback for West Ham earlier than expected.

The England international returned from a month-long hamstring injury lay-off as a 72nd minute substitute in Monday's 2-1 Barclays Premier League victory at QPR in front of Three Lions boss Roy Hodgson.

The 23-year-old is now expected to be named in Hodgson's squad on Thursday for the forthcoming World Cup 2014 qualifiers against San Marino and Poland – but it is this Saturday's London derby at Upton Park he has sights on first.

Raring to go: Andy Carroll is pleased to be back on the pitch after a month-long injury lay-off

Raring to go: Andy Carroll is pleased to be back on the pitch after a month-long injury lay-off

'Since the Fulham game I have been dying to get back,' said the on-loan Liverpool forward said, speaking to the Hammers' official website.

'I've been working hard in the gym and the staff here have helped me to get back fit and obviously coming on at QPR and helping the lads to get the win was great. It was hard.

'I was devastated when I got injured but I've worked hard and I've been the gym every day. I've only been out on the training pitch a handful of times since so it was great to be out there at Loftus Road playing football again.'

Goals from Matt Jarvis and birthday boy Ricardo Vaz Te gave Sam Allardyce's side their first away win of the season and Carroll believes they can build on their hard-fought win.

Smiles better: Carroll celebrates West Ham's win over QPR with team-mate Mark Noble

Good to be back: Carroll thanks the Hammers fans for their support after making his return

Good to be back: Carroll, who celebrated the win over QPR with Mark Noble (L) thanks the Hammers fans for their support after making his return

'We've obviously been playing really well and we proved that on Monday. We had quite a few chances but we didn't put them all away.

'We've been playing well and I think all the lads are looking forward to Arsenal on Saturday.'

The Newcastle native, meanwhile, admitted he is enjoying life living in the capital and has quickly settled in at West Ham.

He said: 'It's completely different. It's a huge city! I'm really enjoying it. It's completely different but I like it.'

West Ham fined 25,000 for EIGHT bookings at QPR

Hammered for 25k! Upton Park outfit fined by Premier League for EIGHT bookings in victory at QPR

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UPDATED:

07:51 GMT, 2 October 2012

West Ham will have to pay 25,000 after EIGHT of their players were booked in the 2-1 win over QPR at Loftus Road on Monday night.

The flurry of yellow cards triggers the fine from the Premier League with the Hammers becoming the first team in the competition to have eight different players cautioned in one match.

Mark Clattenburg was the busy man in the
middle as the referee also booked Adel Taarabt and sent off Samba
Diakite for the hosts.

Matt Jarvis and Ricardo Vaz Te were on target for the visitors with Taarabt replying for Mark Hughes' side.

Ref justice: Kevin Nolan was booked for complaining to Mark Clattenburg

Ref justice: Kevin Nolan was booked for complaining to Mark Clattenburg

'He hasn't spoilt our result but if you look at the spectacle as a game I think there were an awful lot of fouls and decisions he gave that he didn't need to do,' West Ham boss Sam Allardyce said of official Clattenburg.

'An awful lot of yellow cards he gave nearly spoilt the game and I suppose Mark [Hughes] will be disappointed.

'I know we got fined for seven bookings and he has given 20 fouls against us today in a non-physical contest.

'That is really, from my point of view, disappointing but it hasn't affected our performance or result, but what it did was frustrate everybody.'

HAMMERS HIT WITH YELLOW CARDS – IN ORDER

1 – Mohamed Diame was the first name in the book for a foul on Shaun Wright-Phillips shortly before half-time.

2 – Mark Noble picked up a yellow for a foul on Park Ji-Sung in injury-time at the end of the first half.

First up: Mohamed Diame fouled Shaun Wright-Phillips and picked up a booking

First up: Mohamed Diame fouled Shaun Wright-Phillips and picked up a booking

3 – George McCartney was next – after 63 minutes – for a foul on Diakite.

4 – Goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainen had his name taken for time wasting – with about 25 minutes still left on the clock.

5 – Striker Carlton Cole complained as he was booked after a foul on Clint Hill….

Looking worried: The card count will have caused concern for West Ham manager Sam Allardyce

Looking worried: The card count will have caused concern for West Ham manager Sam Allardyce

6 – and skipper Kevin Nolan was also punished for having a moan at Clattenburg.

7 – James Collins caught the yellow fever when he booted the ball away in frustration as a decision went against the Hammers late on.

8 – James Tomkins tried to waste a bit of time as the clock ran down but he took too long over a free-kick on the halfway line and rounded up the card count for the night.

Marching orders: Samba Diakite (No 2) is sent for an early bath by referee Clattenburg at Loftus Road

Marching orders: Samba Diakite (No 2) is sent for an early bath by referee Clattenburg at Loftus Road

James Collins not injured after brave display

West Ham take heart from Collins on strong opening day for Allardyce's men

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UPDATED:

21:30 GMT, 19 August 2012

Fantasy football 2012

James Collins left Upton Park after his second West Ham debut with his right ankle strapped up.

‘It’s fine, just wear and tear… like every game,’ said the Welshman.

That will be music to manager Sam Allardyce’s ears after Collins' brilliant display in the heart of the West Ham defence on Saturday.

If Hammers supporters had forgotten
exactly what Collins is all about, then it would not have taken them
long to remember during the opening day 1-0 win over Aston Villa.

Brave: James Collins (centre) gets stuck in

Brave: James Collins (centre) gets stuck in

Off and running: Kevin Nolan celebrates after scoring the only goal of the game for West Ham

Off and running: Kevin Nolan celebrates after scoring the only goal of the game for West Ham

What they need in the window…

West Ham: More creativity in midfield. Kevin Nolan, Mark Noble and Mohamed Diame were all solid performers but they need a spark. Would the Wolves winger Matt Jarvis provide it

Aston Villa: More potency in the attacking third. Paul Lambert’s new team saw plenty of the ball in the early stages of this game but created almost nothing.

The 28-year-old was magnificent: headers, last-ditch blocks and well-timed interceptions galore. ‘Obviously, I’ve got love for West Ham from when I was previously here — when I left I didn’t really want to,’ said Collins, who went to Villa in 2009.

‘The club were struggling for money and sold me. But I think the West Ham fans knew I didn’t want to go. So to come back, and come back a better player I think, is great.’

Given that Collins left Villa on August 1, Allardyce is likely to have tapped into his knowledge when perfecting Saturday’s game plan.

But as the central defender admits, there was a degree of apprehension about facing his former club so soon after his exit.

Winner: Nolan got on the end of Ricardo Vaz Te's cross to put West Ham in front

Winner: Nolan got on the end of Ricardo Vaz Te's cross to put West Ham in front

‘I’m not sure me knowing Villa so well
helped me personally because obviously you don’t want to make a
horrendous mistake against your old club,’ said Collins.

‘On the other hand, I do have an
insight into their team which could have helped. It was always going to
be a strange one for me. The start of my second spell at the club and
playing against boys I left two weeks ago, it was strange in the lead-up
to the game.

‘One minute you are playing with them
and the next minute you are not. I still speak to a lot of the Villa
boys on the phone because it was only two weeks ago that I left.

‘But as soon as I got out on the pitch, I was just concentrating on getting three points for West Ham and playing well.

Controversy: Aston Villa felt there was an offside in the build-up to West Ham's goal

Controversy: Aston Villa felt there was an offside in the build-up to West Ham's goal

‘Was there any thought of me staying at Villa I don’t think it was there for me to say, if I’m honest.

‘We had a tough couple of seasons and Villa were looking for a change and I was looking for a change.

‘So it was never going to be possible
for me to stay, not for any other reason than there was no contract
offered to me. So as soon as West Ham came in it was a no-brainer.’

Collins was key in stemming an eye-catching early Villa tide as Paul Lambert’s side threatened to overrun West Ham.

Despite the first-day defeat, the new passing style under Lambert offers cause for optimism at Villa Park.

Plan: Paul Lambert says Darren Bent (right) needs more supply

Plan: Paul Lambert says Darren Bent (right) needs more supply

‘We have got to give Darren Bent more
service, because I thought we had a lot of the ball, especially in the
first half-hour,’ said Lambert.

‘I thought we knocked it about really
well and started well. But we never worked the ball and we had to try to
create. When we had that ball, we have to try to be more penetrative.

‘My players are footballers. I don’t
have anybody who just kicks the ball up the pitch. We try to play the
right way, I don’t want to see the ball just smacked up long. If we can
pass, we must pass.’

In contrast, Collins added: ‘We knew
that Villa would pass the ball, I played a couple of games for them out
in America and that’s his philosophy: to pass the ball.

‘I don’t mean to be disrespectful, but as much as they passed it, they didn’t get near the goal.’

Modibo Maiga signs for West Ham

Maiga raring to go after sealing 5m switch to West Ham

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UPDATED:

16:39 GMT, 18 July 2012

Modibo Maiga has revealed his delight after sealing his 5million switch to West Ham.

The 24-year-old Mali striker arrives from Sochaux and has signed a four-year contract at Upton Park.

He will compete with Carlton Cole, Nicky Maynard, Ricardo Vaz Te and Sam Baldock for a place in the Hammers' attack.

Welcome: Modibo Maiga poses in his West Ham shirt, which is on sale from tomorrow in club stores

Welcome: Modibo Maiga poses in his West Ham shirt, which is on sale from tomorrow in club stores

Maiga said: 'I am really happy and excited about joining West Ham United. I know West Ham are a big club in England and I'm really looking forward to representing them.

'They have huge tradition and it is like joining part of a family and that is one of the main reasons I wanted to come here.

'I know some of the big names that have played for the club in the past and I am proud to be part of a new team back in the Premier League.'

Maiga is West Ham's fifth summer signing after Mohamed Diame, George McCartney, Jussi Jaaskelainen and Stephen Henderson.

West Ham offer 6m for Norwich striker Grant Holt

West Ham raise the stakes in Holt chase as Allardyce offers 6m for Norwich striker

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UPDATED:

22:02 GMT, 27 June 2012

West Ham have upped their bid for striker Grant Holt to 6million and hope a 4m payment up front will convince Norwich to sell.

The 31-year-old former Sheffield Wednesday, Rochdale, Nottingham Forest and Shrewsbury frontman is desperate to quit Carrow Road this summer despite the arrival of new manager Chris Hughton.

Wantaway: Grant Holt is desperate to leave Carrow Road

Wantaway: Grant Holt is desperate to leave Carrow Road

Hammers boss Sam Allardyce has already seen bids of 3.5m and 5.5m rejected for the forward, who scored 17 goals last season.

Allardyce, whose newly-promoted side open their Premier League season against Holt's former manager Paul Lambert and Aston Villa in August, is keen to add firepower to his squad ahead of the new term.

West Ham already have an abundance of strikers in their squad with Carlton Cole, Ricardo Vaz Te, Nicky Maynard, Sam Baldock and Frederic Piquionne all in the mix.