West Ham promise new faces

West Ham manager Avram Grant hopes to add more players to his squad before the start of the season.

Grant has signed Thomas Hitzlsperger, Frederic Piquionne and Pablo Barrera since being appointed as Hammers boss on June 3.

Co-owners David Gold and David Sullivan are keen to add more depth to the squad after the team only just managed to escape relegation under previous manager Gianfranco Zola last term.

Moves for defender Tal Ben Haim, who Grant used to manage at Portsmouth, and France international striker Loic Remy have failed to materialise so far while the club's audacious attempt to sign Joe Cole on a free transfer ended in failure when he opted to sign for Liverpool.

Grant held his first training session with the whole of the first-team squad at the club's training ground this morning, with Matthew Upson, Robert Green, Jonathan Spector and Valon Behrami all returning from World Cup duty.

The Israeli has been pleased with how the team have performed in pre-season but is still determined to add more players to the ranks before the club's season-opener against Aston Villa on August 14.

"The squad is not complete yet, we told the players we want to make the squad as strong as we can," Grant told www.whufc.com.

"Even if the club are limited with money, because we are in debt, we know what we are doing and we know we want to do.

"The owners are trying to give their best for the team so we will buy or loan a few more players. Even if I don't like loans so much - most players here will be players for the long term."

West Ham have reportedly made a £12million bid for highly-rated Remy, who is said to be on the radar of some of Europe's top clubs.

Nice chairman Gilbert Stellardo confirmed that West Ham have been in touch with the French club about a potential transfer, and that the 23-year-old is interested in a move to Upton Park.

"West Ham? Remy is definitely interested," he is quoted as saying on lequipe.fr.

"Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal? I have heard about their interest but I have had no contact.

"The only clubs I have talked to are West Ham and Fenerbahce.

"Fenerbahce have also contacted Rennes about Asamoah Gyan and Lyon about Bafetimbi Gomis. If either of those players leave, it is not impossible that their clubs will turn to Loic as well."

West Ham are unbeaten in pre-season having followed up an away win over Peterborough with victories over Borussia Monchengladbach and Panathinaikos while on the club's pre-season tour of Germany and Austria.

Grant has been pleased with his team's efforts so far, but admits they will have to step up a gear if they are be ready to take on Martin O'Neill's side at Villa Park in just under three weeks' time.

"We set ourselves a few targets in Germany and the players were good and positive," Grant added.

"They showed quality and many things for the future. Our aim is to be prepared for a long season.

"It is about stepping it up. In three weeks we will play Aston Villa so we have done what we needed to do.

"Now we will go to the next stage. We will work on tactics and the style of the team. The physical side was very good.

"Also we needed to deal with the international players that have only just started to train and they are looking good."

News
scienceExcitement from alien hunters at 'evidence' of extraterrestrial life
Life and Style
Customers can get their caffeine fix on the move
food + drink
Sport
sport
Sport
David Moyes gets soaked
sport Moyes becomes latest manager to take part in the ALS challenge
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
techCould new invention save millions in healthcare bills?
News
peopleEnglishman managed quintessential Hollywood restaurant Chasen's
Life and Style
food + drinkHarrods launches gourmet food qualification for staff
Voices
Mosul dam was retaken with the help of the US
voicesRobert Fisk: Barack Obama is following the jihadists’ script
Arts and Entertainment
Michael Flatley prepares to bid farewell to the West End stage
danceMichael Flatley hits West End for last time alongside Team GB World champion Alice Upcott
News
Members and supporters of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) community walk with a rainbow flag during a rally in July
i100
Life and Style
Black Ivory Coffee is made using beans plucked from elephants' waste after ingested by the animals
food + drinkFirm says it has created the "rarest" coffee in the world
Arts and Entertainment
Loaded weapon: drugs have surprise side effects for Scarlett Johansson in Luc Besson’s ‘Lucy’
filmReview: Lucy, Luc Besson's complex thriller
Arts and Entertainment
Jamie T plays live in 2007 before going on hiatus from 2010
arts + entsSinger-songwriter will perform on the Festival Republic Stage
Life and Style
food + drinkThese simple recipes will have you refreshed within minutes
News
Jermain Defoe got loads of custard
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

The President came the nearest he has come yet to rivalling George W Bush’s gormless reaction to 9/11 , says Robert Fisk
Ebola outbreak: Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on the virus

Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on Ebola

A Christian charity’s efforts to save missionaries trapped in Africa by the crisis have been justifiably praised. But doubts remain about its evangelical motives
Jeremy Clarkson 'does not see a problem' with his racist language on Top Gear, says BBC

Not even Jeremy Clarkson is bigger than the BBC, says TV boss

Corporation’s head of television confirms ‘Top Gear’ host was warned about racist language
Nick Clegg the movie: Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise

Nick Clegg the movie

Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise
Philip Larkin: Misogynist, racist, miserable? Or caring, playful man who lived for others?

Philip Larkin: What will survive of him?

Larkin's reputation has taken a knocking. But a new book by James Booth argues that the poet was affectionate, witty, entertaining and kind, as hitherto unseen letters, sketches and 'selfies' reveal
Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?

Waxing lyrical

Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?
Texas forensic astronomer finally pinpoints the exact birth of impressionism

Revealed (to the minute)

The precise time when impressionism was born
From slow-roasted to sugar-cured: how to make the most of the British tomato season

Make the most of British tomatoes

The British crop is at its tastiest and most abundant. Sudi Pigott shares her favourite recipes
10 best men's skincare products

Face it: 10 best men's skincare products

Oscar Quine cleanses, tones and moisturises to find skin-savers blokes will be proud to display on the bathroom shelf
Malky Mackay allegations: Malky Mackay, Iain Moody and another grim day for English football

Mackay, Moody and another grim day for English football

The latest shocking claims do nothing to dispel the image that some in the game on these shores exist in a time warp, laments Sam Wallace
La Liga analysis: Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Pete Jenson starts his preview of the Spanish season, which begins on Saturday, by explaining how Fifa’s transfer ban will affect the Catalans
Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape