In-demand Hernandez seeks move

Mexico international Javier Hernandez is keen to end his six-month stay at West Ham United before the transfer window closes, according to his agent.

The former Manchester United star has scored five goals in 18 Premier League appearances for the Hammers this season but has started only once in the top flight since David Moyes succeeded Slaven Bilic in November.

The 29-year-old came off the bench to score as West Ham hit back to draw 1-1 with Bournemouth on Saturday but his representative, Eduardo Hernandez, says a number of clubs have already expressed their interest in the forward, who moved to London from Bayer Leverkusen for £16million last July.

"There are several clubs interested in his services. He's a player everyone knows," he said.

"Our primary focus is a club in which he can play the most games possible. That's the most important thing.

"Javier has asked personally for it. He's commented, stated and demanded that we look for a club that really needs a player with his characteristics because what he wants is to play and play and play."

West Ham are 31/20 to beat Wigan Athletic in the fourth round of the FA Cup on Saturday and 13/8 to finish in the top half of the Premier League table this season.

Livid Klopp demands improvement

An angry Jurgen Klopp is determined to learn from Liverpool's shock 1-0 loss to Swansea City at the Liberty Stadium.

The Reds contrived to lose to the Premier League's rock-bottom side just eight days after they had defeated the runaway leaders Manchester City 4-3 at Anfield.

Alfie Mawson scored the only goal in the first half on Monday but the Swans remain rooted to the foot of the table.

Swansea are now 4/9 to be relegated while Liverpool are 1/3 to finish in the top four of the Premier League and 1/4 to beat West Brom in the fourth round of the FA Cup on Saturday.

"Last weekend [against City] feels like it was half a year ago, it's not what I'm interested in," Klopp said after the game.

"We're frustrated, I'm frustrated, I'm angry because of what we did. We have to get the points, we have to learn from it.

"We lost the game in the first half. Not only because we conceded the goal – It can happen like this – but because we didn't keep the positions we wanted to be in.

"We weren't that secure or confident in what we were doing in the first half."

Liverpool almost equalised in stoppage time when Roberto Firmino's header struck the woodwork but the defeat ended their 18-game unbeaten run in all competitions.

De Bruyne deal boost for City

Kevin De Bruyne has handed Manchester City a massive boost by signing a contract extension to keep him on board until summer 2023.

The 26-year-old Belgium international has been an integral part of City boss Pep Guardiola's plans this season with six goals and 10 assists in the Premier League as the Citizens sit 12 points clear at the top of the table.

De Bruyne, who joined City from German Bundesliga side Wolfsburg in a record £55million deal in August 2015 having endured a frustrating previous spell in England with Chelsea, was tied to City until 2021.

But he was keen to pledge his longer term future to the club with the side enjoying a fine campaign to date and are still on course to win all four major trophies.

De Bruyne told the City website: "I am really happy to have signed this new deal. As I've said previously, my intention has always been to stay here at City, where I've felt at home from day one.

"Not only are we winning – we are playing great football. It's a pleasure to be a part of and I'm really excited about what we can achieve in the coming years."

Director of football Txiki Begiristain added: "Kevin's new deal is great news for our club.

"He has shown this season how important he is to the team and has been integral in everything we've done so far.

"We are thrilled he has committed his long-term future to Manchester City."

City are 10/3 to follow up their expected Premier League win with Champions League glory, while they are priced at 11/4 to lift the FA Cup and 4/7 to win the League Cup.

De Bruyne is available at 1/2 to win the PFA Player of the Year award.

Rakip relishing Hodgson link-up

Erdal Rakip is looking forward to working with the 'legend' Roy Hodgson after joining Crystal Palace on loan from Benfica.

The Sweden Under-21 international midfielder has spent just half a season with the Portuguese outfit having arrived when his contract at Swedish side Malmo expired in the summer.

But Rakip will now remain at Selhurst Park until the end of this current campaign after a loan deal was agreed between the two clubs and Palace will hope he can rediscover the form which saw him score eight goals from 27 league appearances for Malmo last season.

The 21-year-old is looking forward to life in the Premier League and working with Eagles boss, Hodgson, who is a big name in his homeland following his work as Malmo manager in the second half of the 1980s.

"I believe this is a league that suits me and my way of playing," Rakip said on the club's official website.

"It's fast-paced and physically intense, and I'm a classic, balanced number 6; a box-to-box player who runs up and down the field.

"I hope to adapt quickly in order to help the team and show my qualities – I have been training since the season ended and I feel fit and ready to play straight away.

"It will be an honour playing for Roy. He is a legend in Malmo and everyone knows who he is. Crystal Palace is a fantastic club with a lot of history that plays entertaining football, and was the best option for my development and my career at this stage."

Rakip could make his debut for Palace, who sit three points clear of the drop zone and are 10/1 to be relegated this season, in their next Premier League game at West Ham on Tuesday week.

The Eagles are 2/1 to win, while the Hammers are priced at 11/8 and the draw is available at 9/4.

Poyet issues Malcom warning

New boss Gus Poyet has warned Premier League suitors that winger Malcom will be staying with Bordeaux in this transfer window.

The 50-year-old Uruguayan was appointed coach of the Les Girondins on Saturday following the recent sacking of Jocelyn Gourvennec.

And, when asked about the possibility of 20-year-old Malcom departing the Ligue 1 outfit this month, the former Brighton and Sunderland manager insisted that he was told by Bordeaux bosses that the Brazilian is not for sale.

Poyet told L'Equipe: "I asked straight away if Malcom would be staying or not.

"They said yes. I said OK, now we can continue the discussion."

Both Arsenal and Tottenham have been heavily linked with a move for Malcom with Bordeaux president Stephane Martin admitting that he could play in England at some point in the future, but not in this window.

He added: "Malcom, it has been said and said again, he will not be leaving.

"He has said he wants to play in the Premier League one day. That is normal – what player wouldn't want to play in England?

"There is no problem with Malcom."

Malcom is set to be involved when Bordeaux face Lyon in Ligue 1 on Sunday afternoon with the hosts 5/2 to win the match, while Lyon are priced at 21/20 and the draw is available at 12/5.

Carvalhal vows to stay positive

Swansea City manager Carlos Carvalhal has vowed to remain positive as he attempts to guide his side away from the foot of the Premier League table.

The Swans are six points adrift of safety as they prepare to welcome Liverpool to the Liberty Stadium on Monday evening.

And former Sheffield Wednesday head coach Carvalhal is determined to take an attacking approach to the game, despite the Reds having ended the unbeaten league record of Manchester City last time out.

He told the club's official website: "We know that we have a big challenge on our hands, but anything can happen. I believe that nothing is impossible.

"I cannot remember ever going into a game to play for a draw. In all games, whoever we play, we will try to win. That is the way forward."

And Carvalhal even refuses to be cowed into more conservative tactics against a Liverpool side primed to attack at every opportunity by their boss Jurgen Klopp.

He added: "They have strong points, but a team that lets in three has weak points also. It is not a team that wins 2-0, 3-0, 4-0, so I look at the game like that.

"If a team scores four, let's see how they do it and what type of dynamic they have. How can we block them when they have the ball?

"The best teams in the world have very few weak points, but they do have them. So let's try and exploit that and hide the strong points that they do have."

The Swans can be backed at 19/4 to secure a draw on Monday evening, with the visitors 11/1 to claim a 3-1 victory, while City are available at 7/2 to avoid relegation come the end of the season.

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Poch ready for top-four battle

Tottenham Hotspur head coach Mauricio Pochettino says his side need to improve their play, ahead of a potentially crucial run of Premier League games.

Spurs had to settle for a 1-1 draw at Southampton on Sunday, a result which could leave them five points adrift of the top four if Liverpool win at Swansea City on Monday evening.

And things will not get any easier for the Londoners in the next few weeks, as their next three league games see them face Manchester united, Liverpool and Arsenal.

That tough treble is already on the mind of Pochettino, who has urged his squad to give their all to try and be in top form for the tasks ahead.

He told reporters: "Of course these games will be important for us. It is important if we are going to take points and win games.

"It's true that we're going to fight, if not, it will be difficult. That's the idea, try to win games and be consistent. At the end, we have the possibility to fight for the top four."

Spurs are priced at 15/8 to finish in the top four in the Premier League this season, with Liverpool available at 1/6 and Arsenal 6/1.

Meanwhile, Pochettino played down the effect of flu, which saw the likes of goalkeeper Hugo Lloris and playmaker Christian Eriksen sit out the clash with the Saints on Sunday.

He added: "A few players were affected last week, but it's not an excuse, our performance wasn't the best.

"We need to be focused on improving. We must do better, play better. If we want to be in the top four, we need to improve our level."

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Pochettino laments wasteful Spurs

Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino felt his side were guilty of not using the ball well enough in their 1-1 draw with his former club Southampton at St Mary's.

The hosts took a deserved early lead as Spurs central defender Davinson Sanchez diverted Ryan Bertrand's low cross into his own net.

It was to prove short lived however as Harry Kane took advantage of some static marking from a corner less than three minutes later to nod home his 99th Premier League goal.

Jack Stephens could have put the home side ahead again before half-time, while sub Erik Lamela went close late in the second period for Tottenham before Kane dragged a shot wide from ten-yards with the final scoring chance.

Pochettino felt the points dropped were down to Spurs own doing.

"We needed to move the ball quicker and create more," he said. "The result is the result because football punishes us for not using the ball.

"The game was even, we had more possession but we needed to be more aggressive and create more chances, the performance wasn't great but the pitch didn't help.

"You must give credit to the opponent, but I am not happy with our performance."

Spurs are 23/20 to win their next Premier League game at home to Man United, while they are 15/8 to finish in the top four this season.

Southampton remain in the bottom three despite collecting a point and are 9/2 to be relegated this season. His former club are winless in their past 11 Premier League game but Pochettino doesn't feel they are relegation candidates.

"It is temporary that Southampton are in the relegation zone, for sure they will push up the table. It is two points we are going to miss at the end of the season because it is so tough between six or seven teams," he added.

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Hornets turn swiftly to Gracia

Watford have named Javi Gracia as their new head coach, on the same day the club parted company with Marco Silva.

Gracia has been appointed on an 18-month contract at Vicarage Road, having been out of work since leaving Russian club Rubin Kazan last June.

He becomes the tenth manager to work for Watford under the Pozzo family since 2012.

The Hornets only appointed Silva in the summer after he had failed to keep Hull City in the Premier League having arrived in January last year.

A club statement suggested that Everton's approach for Silva in November was the catalyst for his eventual departure.

"The catalyst for this decision is that unwarranted approach, something which the board believes has seen a significant deterioration in both focus and results to the point where the long-term future of Watford FC has been jeopardised," they said in a statement.

"For the security and success of the football club, the board believes it has to make a change."

Watford are the eighth Premier League club to change manager already this season, following changes at Crystal Palace, Everton, Leicester City, Stoke, Swansea, West Brom and West Ham.

Gracia will take his first training session at Watford on Monday. The team lost 2-0 at Leicester on Saturday and find themselves tenth in the Premier League.

Gracia had two seasons with Malaga and led them to consecutive top-10 finishes in La Liga despite operating on limited resources before moving to Russia.

His first game in charge will be Saturday's FA Cup fourth-round tie at Southampton.

Watford are 3/1 to win that game, with Saints 10/11 and the draw 5/2.

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Hornets confirm swift Gracia appointment

Watford have named Javi Gracia as their new head coach, on the same day the club parted company with Marco Silva.

Gracia has been appointed on an 18-month contract at Vicarage Road, having been out of work since leaving Russian club Rubin Kazan last June.

He becomes the tenth manager to work for Watford under the Pozzo family since 2012.

The Hornets only appointed Silva in the summer after he had failed to keep Hull City in the Premier League having arrived in January last year.

A club statement suggested that Everton's approach for Silva in November was the catalyst for his eventual departure.

"The catalyst for this decision is that unwarranted approach, something which the board believes has seen a significant deterioration in both focus and results to the point where the long-term future of Watford FC has been jeopardised," they said in a statement.

"For the security and success of the football club, the board believes it has to make a change."

Watford are the eighth Premier League club to change manager already this season, following changes at Crystal Palace, Everton, Leicester City, Stoke, Swansea, West Brom and West Ham.

Gracia will take his first training session at Watford on Monday. The team lost 2-0 at Leicester on Saturday and find themselves tenth in the Premier League.

Gracia had two seasons with Malaga and led them to consecutive top-10 finishes in La Liga despite operating on limited resources before moving to Russia.

His first game in charge will be Saturday's FA Cup fourth-round tie at Southampton.

Watford are 3/1 to win that game, with Saints 10/11 and the draw 5/2.

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