Morgan Amalfitano

Morgan Amalfitano out at West Ham following argument with Slaven Bilic

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Morgan Amalfitano signed a two-year extension with West Ham in March, but his time at Upton Park could be over already.

The French midfielder is no longer in the first-team after a fall-out with new manager Slaven Bilic, who took over as boss in June.

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According to reports, Amalfitano missed a team meeting and then showed attitude towards Bilic when confronted about it. Bilic denied reports that the two got into a “brawl” at training, but did confirm that the player was no longer in the first team.

I have to protect the team. My first job is to protect the team and keep them as a unit. If I feel that someone is damaging it in that way I have to react and I have done that.

It was not a brawl in front of the players it was quiet meeting between the two of us. I had to do it to keep the harmony.

He’s not back training with the first-team. He’s not in the first-team anymore.”

Amalfitano was not included in Bilic’s team for their opening day win over Arsenal, and has now been told to stay away from the team’s Chadwell Heath training ground.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Currently training with the U-21 side, Amalfitano will likely be looking for a move away from London. He could return to his home-country France, with St. Etienne a club rumored to be interested in his services. He spent five seasons in Ligue 1 with FC Lorient and Marseille before making a move to the Premier League in 2013.

Premier League Saturday recap: West Ham stuns Manchester City, Sanchez braces Arsenal

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A total of six Premier matches occurred this Saturday in Round 9 play, with the most noteworthy game showing West Ham defeat reigning champion Manchester City.

The Hammers got off to a two-goal lead with scores from Diafra Sakho and Morgan Amalfitano, but when David Silva halved the advantage with his strike in the 77th minute, City desperately threw men forward in hopes of salvaging the draw.

In other news, Hull City muscled Liverpool to a 0-0 draw, as Brendan Rodgers’ squad hopes to break the top-five in the coming weeks. Arsenal forward Alexis Sanchez and Swansea striker Wilfred Bony both netted braces to provided their squads with 2-0 victories over Sunderland and Leicester City respectively, while West Brom and Crystal Palace traded penalty kicks en route to a 2-2 result.

Sadio Mane’s lone goal helped the Saints edge Stoke City, 1-0, to keep their Premier League dream season alive.

West Ham United 3-1 Liverpool: Early goals send Irons to big upset (video)

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West Ham United built a 2-0 home lead, then held on for dear life before ending it late in a 3-1 win over Liverpool at Upton Park to cap a busy Saturday in the Premier League.

[RELATED: Full match replays]

Winston Reid and Diafra Sakho struck for goals in the match’s first eight minutes before Raheem Sterling pulled one back in the 26th, but that was all Liverpool could muster in its second-straight loss.

Morgan Amalfitano scored in the 88th minute off formed Liverpool mid Stewart Downing’s feed to cap the win.

The Reds are now losers of three of their first five, in 10th place with six points through five games. Meanwhile, West Ham have leapt over Liverpool, up to eighth place with seven points.

Here’s what we were saying at halftime, with West Ham leading 2-1.

[ RELATED: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ RELATED: Premier League stats ]

To the second half, where Liverpool came close several times through Mario Balotelli and Fabio Borini.

In his first Premier League start for Liverpool in more than 700 days, Borini had a tight-angled, right-footed shot after a feed from Balotelli in the 54th minute, but Adrian saw it the whole way.

source: Getty ImagesBalotelli nearly found a goal in the 69th minute when he drove toward the box and handcuffed Adrian with a right-footed screamer. Adrian punched the ensuing corner wide.

Cheikhou Kouyate provided a real problem when he was injured with 10 minutes to go, just minutes after the Hammers made their last substitution. He fought through the pain.

Liverpool ended the match with well over 60 percent possession, but zero points.

LINEUPS

West Ham United: Adrian, Cresswell, Reid, Tomkins, Demel (Jenkinson, 61′), Noble, Song (Amalfitano, 69′), Kouyate, D. Sakho, Downing, Valencia (Collins, 76′)

Goals: Reid (2′), D. Sakho (7′), Amalfitano (88′)

Liverpool: Mignolet, Manquillo (M. Sakho, 22′), Moreno, Lovren, Skrtel, Gerrard, Henderson, Lucas (Lallana, 46′), Sterling, Borini (Lambert, 75′), Balotelli.

Goal: Sterling (26′)

West Brom 1-2 Stoke City: Charlie Adam winner gives Stoke best-ever finish (video)

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Charlie Adam produced a goal out of nothing and Stoke City combined a win with a Newcastle loss to jump to ninth place on the final day, marking their best-ever Premier League finish.

The substitute weaved his way through a lackadaisical West Brom defense all by himself and gave Mark Hughes a fitting finish to a surprisingly successful season.

West Brom were incredibly close early on, hitting the bar with a header off a corner in just the second minute.  The ball bounced straight down but goalline technology showed the ball did not fully cross the line.

source:
Stoke finish the season in ninth as the Potters prevailed.

That was all the Baggies would have for a while, as Stoke brought their quality wing play to the Hawthorns and it began to go to work.

The Potters would eventually benefit from putting the touchline under pressure, as Marko Arnautovic powered down the left-hand side and crossed into the box, but his cross never found its mark. Instead, it nicked off Gareth McAuley’s heel and snuck into the bottom corner for an own-goal and Stoke’s lead.

West Brom had a few half chances, but the goal energized the visitors and things looked bleak for the Baggies in their last match of the season.

Stoke finished out the half in comfortable fashion, with the home attack offering little into the box and the visitors enjoying plenty of dangerous possession.

In the second half, things were the same for West Brom, finding themselves helpless in the final third and Stoke looking much more incisive.  Despite this, the Baggies would find an equalizer.

In their first real bit of quality, Graham Dorrans had options and found Craig Dawson, whose cross was passed up by Morgan Amalfitano before Stephane Sessegnon crashed it home.

With the game slowing down as the minutes ticked on, Stoke City searched for their winner and waited until the 86th minute before it came.  Substitute Charlie Adam received a ball from behind the halfway line and worked his way past four sleeping defenders to slot home the winner for Stoke.

LINEUPS:

West Brom – Foster; Dawson (O’Neil 83′), McAuley, Olsson, Brunt; Dorrans, Mulumbu (Vydra 90′), Morrison, Amalfitano (Anichebe 63′), Sessegnon; Berahino.

Goals – Sessegnon 56′

Stoke City – Sorensen; Muniesa, Shawcross, Wilson, Cameron; Arnautovic (Etherington 90′), Whelan, Nzonzi, Odemwingie (Crouch 77′); Ireland, Walters (Adam 81).

Goals – McAuley (og) 22′, Adam 86′

Arsenal 1-0 West Bromwich Albion: early Giroud goal proves decisive (Video)

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West Brom, currently four points into safety, will have to wait and see whether Norwich manage to get a result at Chelsea later in the day. If so, their loss to Arsenal won’t matter one bit, as the Albion will be safe. The Gunners, meanwhile, would like the opposite result, as if Chelsea lose they’ll be two points back of third place.

It was the Baggies that needed the win, but Arsenal weren’t prepared to be generous. Before five minutes had passed, Lukas Podolski had given the visitors a bit of a scare, but his effort went wide of Ben Foster’s post.

The Gunners’ shaky defense was exposed early on, when Saido Berahino easily slipped behind the back line. His low shot hit the heel of Laurent Koscielny, however, and Wojciech Szczęsny was able to make an easy save.

That must’ve served as a wake-up call for Arsenal, because they took the lead before the 15th minute. A shot from Santi Cazorla was deflected out for a corner, taking by Cazorla himself. Olivier Giroud shook off his man, heading past Foster to give the hosts the lead. 

West Brom steadily worked their way back into the half, while Arsenal gently drifted off to sleep. Graham Dorrans woke them up with a sharp strike from 25 yards, which must’ve stung Szczesny’s palms as he pushed it away. It fell to Berahino, but the forward could only balloon his shot well over the bar.

The rest of the half trailed off into nothingness, so it came as a relief when the Albion started pressing harder after the restart. Yet, despite their need to find safety, West Brom couldn’t find a decent effort.

With 20 minutes left, the Baggies were able to make a little noise. Morgan Amalfitano broke through the Arsenal defense, going one on one with Szczesny. The goalkeeper somehow managed to keep it out, with the aid of Per Mertesacker. Craig Dawson got his head on the end of the resulting corner, but it went high. 

Arsenal looked like they were set to double their lead, with Podolski close in on goal. He couldn’t quite connect, but somehow the shot drifted into the post…and drifted right back out again.

The visitors continued to make their presence felt, but could only come close – their best effort a narrowly high header, again by Dawson, in the 86th minute.

LINEUPS

Arsenal: Szczesny, Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal (Vermaelen 80), Flamini, Arteta (Kallstrom 63), Cazorla (Rosicky), Ozil, Podolski, Giroud

Goals: Giroud 14′

West Bromwich Albion: Foster, Dawson, Lugano, Olsson, Brunt, Amalfitano (Anichebe 80), Mulumbu (Vydra 85), Morrison, Dorrans, Sessegnon, Berahino