herald

Tuesday 12 December 2017

Hammers board at odds with Sam over Ravel future

The West Ham board appear to be at odds with manager Sam Allardyce over the future of Ravel Morrison.

The former Manchester United youngster looked to have a bright future at Upton Park after breaking into the Hammers' first-team at the start of last season.

Morrison quickly became a fan favourite with his skilful, attacking displays in a West Ham side often accused of being negative in their approach.

But, after a slump in form and a number of niggling injuries, the 21-year-old fell out of favour and ended the season on loan at QPR - helping Harry Redknapp's side achieve promotion through the Sky Bet Championship play-offs.

With reported interest from the likes of Swansea and CSKA Moscow, Allardyce would likely listen to offers for the England Under-21 international but Hammers co-owner David Sullivan says the board are keen to keep Morrison at the club.

"Sam has said Ravel is not part of his plans but we do - as a board - see him as part of our plans," Sullivan said.

"I think he (Allardyce) said in a press conference, if I read it correctly, he's not part of his plans for this season. I think he said that in New Zealand but we don't agree with that. We would like to sit down and give him a longer contract."

Discussions between manager and board will no doubt be required to iron out any difference of opinion regarding Morrison, with Sullivan aware that having the player sat on the bench on a long contract would not be beneficial.

"We do like him," Sullivan added.

"We do see him as part of the long-term future of the club but we have to agree it with the manager because there's no point signing a player he's not going to play."

Morrison was left at home as the remainder of the West Ham squad jetted off for a pre-season tour of New Zealand, with the club confirming he underwent successful groin surgery.

Meanwhile, Sullivan is targeting at least one new forward after the club announced that Andy Carroll will be sidelined for four months.

The 25-year-old confirmed that he would require surgery on the problem and will now sit out the start of the season for the second year in succession.

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