Sport Soccer

Sunday 24 September 2017

Nene set for debut against Palace

Sam Allardyce, pictured, has promised Nene a first taste of English football against Palace
Sam Allardyce, pictured, has promised Nene a first taste of English football against Palace

West Ham boss Sam Allardyce will hand Nene his debut against Crystal Palace on Saturday.

The 33-year-old Brazilian forward arrived last week on a free transfer but was not deemed ready for a place in the squad for Sunday's 2-2 draw at Tottenham.

But an injury to Carlton Cole, who hurt his hamstring after coming off the bench at Spurs, has reduced Allardyce's options and he has promised Nene a first taste of English football against Palace.

"Nene would have probably featured anyway but he will definitely be involved now because we're down to the two strikers with Andy Carroll's injury and Carlton Cole's new hamstring problem," said Allardyce.

"(Strikers) Enner Valencia and Diafra Sakho did a fantastic job - like the whole team - against Tottenham. It was just a shame we were not all going out celebrating another victory against Tottenham."

The Hammers, meanwhile, were praised by Labour MP for Birkenhead Frank Field for committing to paying all staff the living wage.

West Ham join Chelsea and Everton in making the pledge, which they will institute from June 1 for all directly-employed workers.

Field said: "The message is becoming louder and clearer with each of these pledges: our most successful industries can afford to pay their lowest paid staff a fairer wage for the work they do, and we must keep asking them to do so.

"West Ham deserve great credit for making it a hat-trick of Living Wage successes in the Premier League. Their commitment builds on the momentum behind getting our top football clubs to pay their ground staff enough to live on; three clubs down, seventeen to go."

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