Anfield alert! Ings are all–Reddy looking up. Following last week’s snapping up of England international James Milner from Man City, Liverpool have now confirmed the signing of Burnley’s England Under-21 international Danny Ings.

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The former Bournemouth forward is in the England Under-21 squad for this month’s European Championship in the Czech Republic.

Aged only 22, Ings scored 11 goals in the Premier League this season but could not prevent the Lancashire club from being relegated. Ings joined the Clarets from Bournemouth four years ago for £1m and scored 43 goals in 130 games for the club.

Liverpool aren’t hanging about in their hungry hunt for more fire power following the dismal end to a disappointing season. With Suarez (31) and Sturridge (21) Liverpool scored 101 league goals while coming second in 2013/4, but last season Brendan Rodgers’ boys only achieved half that, a measly 52 with retiring club legend Steven Gerrard top scorer with nine – and Balotelli, Lambert, Borini and injured Sturridge scoring eight between them as Liverpool finished sixth.

The Hammers are also striking the right note early with West Ham’s managerial appointment of former defender Slaven Bilic in a three year appointment. 46 year old Bilic managed Croatia for six years while beating England twice in 2008, and has also managed Lokomotiv Moscow and lately Besiktas.

Bilic was a popular player at Upton Park back in 1996/7 playing 54 times, and while he feels at home at the club, Bilic mustn’t get too comfortable as the ambitious Hammers are on the move to the London Olympic Stadium next year. Bilic is clearly excited about his own move: ‘I could feel that they really wanted me, so it was an easy choice. I would say to the West Ham fans that I will give my best and together we will achieve great things.

I remember West Ham as a special club.’ Well Slaven, let’s hope those fierce fans give you more support than they gave departing manager Sam Allardyce, who left last month after the Hammers finished a highly respectable 12th in the Premier League. Big Sam had brought the East Londoners back up to the Premiership as he was asked to do – and kept them there – while being regularly roundly abused on the terraces. We will see if the Croatian can do any better in one of the toughest leagues in world football….

 

‘Two into one won’t go’: it doesn’t work, there ought to be a law about it. Number two up to number one has now proved fatal for faithful-but-flawed, too-honest Geordie John Carver. Newcastle’s assistant manager was given the managerial hot seat until the end of the season, following Alan Pardew’s departure south to join Crystal Palace. But the Magpies imploded and narrowly missed relegation on the last day of the season.

Carver’s reward for all his valiant but plainly mis-managed efforts is the sack, together with his assistant Steve Stone. Now the worst-kept secret in football is out that Derby reject Steve McClaren is taking over at St James’ Park – and now he’s arrived at last he’d better sort out the black and white malaise at the club quickly, the Toon Army won’t take much more. Or, Joe King apart, will the move be another classic piece of Mike Ashley mis-management?

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