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Thursday, January 1, 2009
ESPNsoccernet: January 2, 6:39 PM UK
Hammers to consider all offers for top players

West Ham chief executive Scott Duxbury has admitted no player is off-limits as the club brace themselves for several bids on their stars during the January transfer window.

A number of Hammers have been linked with a move away from Upton Park, most notably Craig Bellamy, Matthew Upson and Scott Parker.

With West Ham feeling the financial pinch more than most, Duxbury said all offers would be considered, but insisted the final decision would lie with manager Gianfranco Zola rather than the club's money men.

''We must not be afraid of interest in or bids for our leading players,'' Duxbury told the club's website. ''Each approach will be considered in terms of fee, fitness, form and where the manager thinks the player is in his career.

''We have to consider the will of the player and whether he is committed to what we are trying to achieve.

''A bid may be evaluated by the manager as allowing him to significantly improve his team.''

West Ham have suffered several off-the-field problems of late, with owner Bjorgolfur Gudmundsson enduring major financial losses as a result of the credit crunch, while the Carlos Tevez affair continues to hang over the club and a hefty compensation payment could be due to Sheffield United.

However, Duxbury insisted the club's debts do not mean they must sell this month.

''Players don't have to be sold but it has been clear since the arrival of Gianfranco that he is keen to have a smaller first-team squad based on quality over quantity,'' he added.

''As I say, he looks likely to move on some fringe players in a bid to achieve a smaller squad of players that he can work closely with on a day to day basis.''




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