Mike Dean opted to send the 25-year-old off after watching several replays of the incident on the pitch-side monitor.
In news that will come as a shock to no-one, West Ham have appealed Tomas Soucek’s questionable dismissal against Fulham on Saturday evening.
Following a VAR review, the Czech midfielder was shown a straight red card by referee Mike Dean in injury time of the 0-0 draw at Craven Cottage after a coming together with Aleksandar Mitrovic.
Replays showed the towering West Ham man had caught Mitrovic in the face with his elbow as he attempted to manoeuvre his arm into a different position, but the VAR Lee Mason recommended an on-field review.
Bizarrely, it seems the review was recommended because of Soucek’s clenched fist, with the suggestion that that somehow constituted violent conduct.
Never one to shy away from the limelight, Mike Dean opted to send the 25-year-old off after watching several replays of the incident on the pitch-side monitor.
Speaking as a pundit on Match of the Day on Saturday night, former Arsenal striker Ian Wright described the decision as ‘the worst he had ever seen’.
In a club statement released on Sunday, West Ham said: “West Ham United have submitted notice to The Football Association to appeal the red card Tomas Soucek was shown in Saturday’s Premier League fixture against Fulham.
“The Czech midfielder was sent off in added time at the end of the second half after coming into contact with Fulham forward Aleksandar Mitrović.
“Referee Mike Dean was asked to look at the incident on the pitch-side monitor by VAR official Lee Mason and decreed that the No28’s actions constituted violent conduct.
“The appeal against Souček’s red card will now be reviewed by an independent regulatory commission at the Football Association.”
If the appeal is successful, which – let’s be honest – seems highly likely, Soucek will be available for David Moyes’ side’s FA Cup fifth round tie against Manchester United on Tuesday.
If the ban is somehow upheld, the influential midfielder will miss that game, as well as the Premier League visits of Sheffield United and Tottenham to the London Stadium.
This is Mike Dean’s second questionable VAR-influenced red card decision in a matter of days, after he wrongly sent off Southampton’s Jan Bednarek against Man Utd at Old Trafford.
The Pole was dismissed after conceding a penalty despite not making any contact with Anthony Martial. That decision was successfully overturned.
That’s it. To quote every person ever – the game has officially gone.
Time of death: 97 minutes into West Ham United’s 0-0 draw with Fulham.
Rubbing Season 3 GIF by The Simpsons – Find & Share on GIPHYCause of death: Mike Dean, VAR and Tomas Soucek’s sad face.
In possibly the worst use and execution of the Video Assistant Referee in Premier League history, Dean opted to brandish a red card to the loveable Czech star, for accidentally brushing Aleksandar Mitrovic with his elbow as he attempted to make a bit of space for himself.
The former FA Cup final winning goalscorer posted a picture of his bags packed late on Thursday, accompanied by a caption confirming his impending arrival in the capital.
Jesse Lingard has completed his loan move from Manchester United to West Ham until the end of the season.
The 28-year-old has been a peripheral figure at Old Trafford throughout 2020/21, and is yet to feature in the Premier League. He’s been restricted to just 179 minutes of action in cup competitions, and last played for United in their FA Cup third round win over Watford at the beginning of the month.
Talk of a loan move away surfaced at the beginning of January, and after weeks of speculation it’s West Ham who have managed to snare Lingard on a temporary deal until the end of the season.
Confirming his arrival on their official website, Lingard told West Ham TV: “I’m excited. It’s another new chapter in my life. Nothing is guaranteed but I’ve come here to work hard and help the team and bring my experience. That’s the main aim. I just want to enjoy my football and get back playing again and get my feet back on the pitch.
“There were lots of clubs involved but, for me personally, I felt this was the right move. I’ve obviously had a previous relationship with the manager as he was at Man U and I’ve played under him before, so he knows my qualities and what I can bring to the team. I know a couple of the players as well – I know Dec [Rice] very well from the England side – and I feel I can really settle in here quickly.”
“It’s important that a player and manager have a good relationship. He’s got really good morals, he gets his team working hard and I’ve had a chat with him already and there are no guarantees – it’s down to me to put the work in and put the graft in, to get into the team and play well week-in, week-out.”
“I can’t wait to show [the West Ham fans] what I’ve got in store. I’m excited and I want to help the team push up the table as far as they can.”
West Ham manager David Moyes, who worked with Lingard during his time at Old Trafford, added: “I’ve seen him play as a young boy, when he was still a wide player on the right, and I’ve seen him play off the left. He’s played for England as a No10, he’s played for England as a No8, and I actually think if we needed him as a False 9, he could do that as well.
“We’re bringing in that versatility, I’ve wanted to try to get an energetic team at the moment and Jesse has been known for his work-rate and effort, so I think he’ll fit in nicely with what we’ve got.
“I hope he brings us a little bit of quality too, and a winning mentality from Manchester United.”
Earlier on Friday, United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer hinted that he expects Lingard to return to the club ahead of next season, when he will heading into the final year of his contract.
That is despite West Ham’s best efforts to insert an option or obligation to buy clause into his loan deal.
“‘We want Jesse to come back here revitalised and having shown at West Ham how good a player he is,” Solskjaer told his pre-match press conference ahead of Sunday’s game with Arsenal (via MailOnline Sport). “He’s just been unfortunate with a couple of issues, some periods he had to stay away from us with COVID, isolation and close contact.
‘[The] rest of the team has done well, little to no injuries, not forced his way into the team – [he can] come back and show he’s a Manchester United player through and through.”
Lingard’s move to the London Stadium is an opportunity to get his stalling career back on track, and seems to be an one that he’s relishing if his recent social media posts are anything to go by.
One thing that stands out off the bat is Benrahma’s direct influence in front of goal. Last season alone, he netted 17 goals in the Championship and contributed nine assists, helping Brentford reach the play-off final.
If you’re a West Ham supporter, you’re probably sick to the back teeth of the club’s transfer business during the ‘summer’ window.
Just one new arrival has wandered through the London Stadium doors, in the shape of right-back Vladimir Coufal. Costing just £5m, he hardly represents big business – though judging by his debut performance at Leicester pre-international break, the Czech may turn out to be a shrewd signing.
Other than that, West Ham’s supporters have had to settle for Tomas Soucek’s loan being made into a permanent move, with a number of other supposed targets falling by the wayside.
There’s also been the intense furore around the club’s decision to allow Grady Diangana, a promising young winger who had graduated from the academy, to join West Brom permanently. Sure, he netted the bank balance a cool £18m, but his departure represented everything that’s bad about West Ham’s way of doing things these days.
Furthermore, once record-signing Felipe Anderson has been lopped off the wage bill and sent packing to FC Porto on loan – a move instigated and pushed through by the club and not the player, if we’re to believe what we read.
There is, however, a small ray of light attempting to beam through the transfer darkness. That light goes by the name of Said Benrahma, a highly-rated Algerian playmaker who has made waves in the Championship with Brentford for the past couple of years.
A deal potentially costing upwards of £30m – yes, £30m – is agreed, offering some respite for a fanbase who have had very little to shout about in recent times, despite two glorious results before the pause for needless international football.
The question on every supporter’s lips now will revolve around value for money, and whether or not a player unproven at the highest level is worth forking out such a large sum for – particularly when Diangana was already on the books and raising cash to strengthen the defence was the primary reason for his departure.
With the help of WhoScored, we’ve done a little bit of digging into Benrahma’s game – comparing his statistics from the past season to Diangana and Anderson, in order to paint a more complete overview of what this deal means for West Ham.
The 25-year-old was one-third of the Bees’ ‘BMW’ attacking triumvirate – alongside Bryan Mbuemo and Ollie Watkins – and between the three of them, they accounted for 78% of the 83 league goals scored by Thomas Frank’s side. Benrahma also played in 43 of 46 Championship games last season, as well as appearing in both play-off semi-final legs and the final.
In comparison, Diangana only started in half of West Brom’s Championship fixtures, totalling 30 appearances overall. He played almost 2,000 less minutes than Benrahma, but still managed to tot up eight goals and six assists as the Baggies secured automatic promotion – an indicator that without injuries, he could have made a more substantial contribution.
Anderson, meanwhile, endured a player’s version of second-season syndrome, as his promising debut campaign in east London was quickly swept aside in favour of a campaign of anonymity.
The Brazilian scored just one Premier League goal and was responsible for just four assists – playing half of the amount of minutes he did during the 2018/19 campaign.
He only featured in 25 Premier League games in all – 80% of those coming from the start – and his minutes dwindled significantly towards the end of the season as David Moyes opted to utilise Pablo Fornals on his favoured left-hand side.
Benrahma’s other standout categories revolve around his directness in attack. He’s been playing at a slightly lower level, granted, but his average of 5.9 dribbles per 90 minutes played far exceeds what Diangana – playing in the same division – and Anderson were producing.
He also rained down 175 shots on goal over the course of the campaign, and although that only correlates to a 9.7% conversation rate, it demonstrates Benrahma’s appetite for scoring goals. In any event, netting 17 isn’t half bad when you consider it’s almost double Diangana and Anderson’s combined figure and his efforts on target stood at a respectable 36.5%.
In terms of passing, you’re splitting hairs between pass completion rate among the three, though Benrahma does rank highest in terms of number passes completed per 90 minutes. That’s an indicator that Brentford have been – and are – keen to get him on the ball as much as possible, given that he also excels in the other aforementioned categories.
But what stands out above anything, perhaps, is Benrahma’s fitness. When he moved to the capital aged 23, he’d never played more than 31 league games in a season – and even that was double the amount of his next best. At Brentford, he’s featured in 94 games in all competitions – at the time of writing – and that consistency has helped evolve his game ten-fold.
He’s now West Ham’s primary target and is almost certainly an upgrade on Diangana, no matter the circumstances of his departure from the club. He’s likely a better fit than Anderson, too, and the statistics highlight the graft Benrahma is willing to put in week in, week out – something that the former Lazio man didn’t necessarily display each and every time he took to the field.
Personal terms now just need to be thrashed out for Benrahma, and West Ham fans should be excited – because he does appear to have that little bit of ‘wow factor’, and could easily follow in the footsteps of Watkins, who is already shining brightly at Aston Villa after a big-money move.
Since arriving in west London, he has been nothing short of sensational, and he will bring invention and flair to West Ham.
West Ham have agreed a £30m fee with Brentford for Algerian winger Said Benrahma.
The 25-year-old lit up the Championship last season, registering 17 goals and nine assists for Thomas Frank’s side. Ever since the Bees lost to Fulham in the 2020 playoff final, speculation has been rife over his future, with several Premier League clubs linked.
Arsenal, Aston Villa and Leeds United were all thought to be interested in the summer but West Ham have recently emerged as favourites to land the him. On Friday, NobleSport reported that the Hammers had submitted a £17m bid for Benrahma, not including add-ons.
And it now seems that a £30m deal has been agreed. According to The Athletic, that fee includes all add-ons, with personal terms still needing to be negotiated.
Benrahma started his career at Nice, enjoying a string of fruitful loan moves between 2013 and 2018 before being snapped up by Brentford.
After a troubling start to the Premier League season, the Hammers picked up back-to-back wins against Wolves and Leicester before the international break. This fine form has relieved some of the discontent among the supporters, who had previously expressed their dismay about the club’s performance on and off the pitch.
The sale of youth academy graduate Grady Diangana to West Brom attracted the ire of Hammers fans, and there is also long term resentment over the club’s move to the London Stadium.
David Moyes, who will return to the touchline following a two-week absence after testing positive for coronavirus, will be hoping that his side’s good run of results continues next weekend when they take on Tottenham.
Norwich were condemned to a record fifth relegation from the Premier League as Michail Antonio’s four-goal blitz fired West Ham to a 4-0 win at Carrow Road on Saturday.
A seventh successive league defeat for Daniel Farke’s side sealed their fate as Antonio’s ruthless display boosted West Ham’s own survival bid.
Norwich are 13 points from safety with only three games left, meaning they are certain to make an immediate return to the Championship after last season’s promotion campaign.
The Canaries have become accustomed to relegation in the Premier League era, going down on four previous occasions in 1995, 2005, 2014 and 2016.
Farke was already resigned to relegation before this weekend given Norwich had lost every game since the coronavirus hiatus.
“We wanted to beat the odds again but when the dust settles the outcome is more or less what was expected. It doesn’t take anything away from the fact that we are disappointed,” Farke said.
“From the first day after promotion our chances to survive were perhaps 5 percent so in 19 out of 20 cases you will go down. If you have luck and no injuries then you have a chance.
“When we are 100 percent we are competitive but when it’s 96 or 97 percent then it sometimes looks like men against boys. That’s what I expected.”
With all games being played behind closed doors, some Norwich fans might have been relieved not to have to watch the embarrassment of their limp demise in person.
In truth, they have looked out of their depth among the Premier League elite from the moment they paid the price for a naively attacking game-plan in a 4-1 defeat at Liverpool on the opening day of the season.
Farke was hamstrung by Norwich’s decision not to spend big money on new signings following their promotion.
Since Teemu Pukki’s early-season goal rush dried up, they have been on a relentless slide towards the Championship.
A 3-2 win over Manchester City was a rare highlight but just weeks later a 5-1 home defeat against Aston Villa underlined the problems undermanned Norwich would endure all season.
Norwich face losing promising youngsters Todd Cantwell and Max Aarons to Premier League clubs when the transfer window opens.
West Ham’s second win in four games was a huge lift to their hopes of staying up.
David Moyes’ side are six points above the bottom three with three games left against Watford, Manchester United and Aston Villa.
The early signs were ominous for Norwich as West Ham took the lead in the 11th minute.
Arriving to meet Issa Diop’s flick from Jarrod Bowen’s corner, Antonio volleyed into the roof of the net from close-range for his third goal in his last four games.
Norwich were surrendering with a whimper and Antonio pushed them closer to the relegation trap door in first half stoppage-time.
Rising above the meek challenge of two Norwich defenders, Antonio glanced his header into the far corner from Mark Noble’s free-kick.
Antonio was proving unplayable for the leaky Norwich rearguard and he completed his hat-trick in the 54th minute, looping a header into the net after Tim Krul saved his initial effort.
Antonio completed a memorable personal performance with his fourth goal in the 74th minute, coolly finishing from Ryan Fredericks’ cross.
Troy Deeney scored two penalties as Watford improved their survival prospect with a 2-1 win against Newcastle at Vicarage Road.
Newcastle snatched the lead in the 23rd minute when Matt Ritchie’s corner was flicked on by Federico Fernandez and Dwight Gayle bundled home at the far post for his third goal of the season.
But Deeney pulled Watford level seven minutes after the restart.
Kiko Femenia was clipped inside the area by Ritchie and Deeney smashed the penalty past Martin Dubravka.
In the 82nd minute, Javier Manquillo brought down Ismaila Sarr and Deeney stepped up again to bury his second penalty.
Fourth bottom Watford are now six points clear of third bottom Bournemouth, who face Leicester on Sunday.
Second bottom Aston Villa are seven points adrift of safety before Sunday’s clash with Crystal Palace.
West Ham and England legend Martin Peters has passed away aged 76, the east London club confirmed on Saturday evening.
Peters had been suffering with ill health for a few years, after being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2016.
Gordon Banks,Martin Peters,Sir Geoff Hurst,Roger Hunt
The Hammers released an official communication from the former midfielder’s family on Saturday evening, announcing the news of Peters’ passing.
“It is with profound sadness that we announce that Martin passed away peacefully in his sleep at 4.00am this morning,” the statement read.
“A beloved husband, dad and grandad, and a kind, gentle and private man, we are devastated by his loss but so very proud of all that he achieved and comforted by the many happy memories we shared.
“We will be making no further comment and kindly ask that the privacy of our family is respected at this extremely difficult time.”
Peters spent over a decade at West Ham, making over 300 appearances for the club, before enjoying spells at Tottenham Hotspur, Norwich City and Sheffield United. He was most famous at club level for his affiliation with the Irons however, winning the FA Cup and European Cup Winners Cup during his time at Upton Park.
Bobby Charlton,Ray Stubbs
Peters was an integral part of the England international side which claimed the nation’s only World Cup success in its history to date, scoring the Three Lions’ second goal in their historic 4-2 victory over West Germany in the final.
The midfielder went on to collect 67 caps for England, in an international career which spanned eight years. Peters was inducted into the English Hall of Fame in 2006, following his incredible achievements as a footballer for both club and country.