Thursday, August 02, 2007


"My job now is to replace him, which shouldn't take too long I don't think, and then move on to other players in other positions as quickly as I can or at the same time." So, Sam, no concerns whatsoever about the imminent departure of Kieron Dyer, then?

Dyer, whose desire to leave the club for "family reasons" has seen a pointless hate campaign against him swing into action, looks set to join West Ham, with a fee having been agreed and talks likely to take place within the next day or two. What with Lee Bowyer already at the club and Craig Bellamy having signed earlier in the summer, Alan Curbishley seems to be busy assembling the Bobby's Borstal Boys side of around 2003-4 at the Boleyn. Good luck on keeping a tight rein on them all, Alan - you'll need it.

Allardyce's comments about Dyer came after tonight's friendly with Hull, which - after comfortably beating Celtic and Juventus in our previous two pre-season outings - we inevitably lost, going down 1-0 to a goal from former Spurs winger Dean Marney. Had Obafemi Martins had his shooting boots on, it may have been a different story, but as it was Hull outplayed our frighteningly youthful side - rather worrying, all told. The need for reinforcements has only been underlined.

Rumoured target Boukary Drame has left Paris St Germain but opted not to link up with former team-mate David Rozehnal, joining Sochaux instead, while former Magpies Andy Griffin and Giuseppe Rossi have both also been on the move, signing for Derby and Villareal respectively (the latter a particularly surprising transfer, given Taggart's oft-repeated fondness for the striker). Charles N'Zogbia continues to be linked with Fulham, but one Toon player going nowhere - at least not against the club's wishes - is Michael Owen, that worrying release clause in his contract having expired at midnight.


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