Bordeaux to Claret?

WEST HAM S long battle to sign a new striker hit yet another snag this week when Bordeaux turned down their offer for Moroccan international Marouane Chamakh, writes DAVE EVANS. The 25-year-old is desperate to leave the French champions, but approaches b

WEST HAM'S long battle to sign a new striker hit yet another snag this week when Bordeaux turned down their offer for Moroccan international Marouane Chamakh, writes DAVE EVANS.

The 25-year-old is desperate to leave the French champions, but approaches by Sunderland, Arsenal and the Hammers have all been knocked back by the Champions League outfit.

The frustrated six foot two inch striker, who scored two goals for his club at the weekend in a 3-2 victory over Sochaux, has gone on record to express his anger with Bordeaux.

He said: "The transfer window is not shut, but I'm pessimistic about my chances.


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"West Ham are the latest to come in, but it is only in the past week that they have shown an interest.

"But I am seeing what happened with Arsenal all over again - the problem is Bordeaux, so it is very tricky for me."

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West Ham have until this coming Monday to secure the deal for a player who has 50 international caps to his name, or he will announce that he is staying at the French club, who are coached by former World Cup winner Laurent Blanc.

They are still hopeful, but it would seem that Bordeaux are determined to keep their prize asset, even if it means running down a contract that only has a year left.

West Ham had an initial bid for the Moroccan turned down last week, and this latest set-back will frustrate manager Gianfranco Zola even further.

Protracted negotiations with Eidur Gudjohnsen and Luca Toni also seem to have drawn a blank and the Ham-mers now have just 12 days to add to their squad.

Meanwhile, defender James Collins has turned down an offer from Stoke City, after the two clubs agreed a �5million deal.

Collins, who has made 63 appearances in four injury-hit years for the Hammers, was at the Britannia Stadium on Tuesday to discuss personal terms, but the two parties did not reach an agreement.

It seems the deal is not dead in the water, but the ball is very much in Stoke's court, with the Welsh international seemingly happy to fight for his place at Upton Park.

Herita Ilunga is battling to be fit for Sunday's London derby clash with Spurs.

The full back was forced off with a damaged jaw at Wolves and is rated as very doubtful for the game, with Jonathan Spector a likey replacement.

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