September 22, 2019

Pellegrini confirms interest in Nasri

November 22, 2018
Nasri
Samir Nasri

West Ham manager Manuel Pellegrini has confirmed he hopes to sign Samir Nasri in January and insisted Marko Arnautovic is going nowhere.

Midfielder Nasri, who played for Pellegrini at Manchester City, is training with the Hammers to build up his fitness following an 18-month doping ban.

Pellegerini needs reinforcements to his injury-hit West Ham squad and he will offer Nasri a contract if the 31-year-old Frenchman can get up to speed.

“Samir Nasri is working here with us,” said Pellegrini. “It’s a long time that he had his ban but we are giving him a hand to return to football.

“I hope that from now until the end of the year he will be fit, and if that is the case we will try to keep him here at West Ham.”

Arnautovic, meanwhile, is the subject of fresh transfer speculation after his brother and representative hinted during the international break that the Austrian forward, 29, should be at a club higher up the table.

But Arnautovic is a key figure at West Ham with five goals to his name this season and Pellegrini is determined not to lose him.

“He is a West Ham player because he has a contract here, he is happy here,” said Pellegrini. “Every player always wants to play in the biggest team but I don’t think that Marko is thinking about that.

“He is thinking about West Ham and he tries to make his best performance in every game.”

Pellegrini has been boosted by the return of Andy Carroll and Jack Wilshere ahead of the visit of champions City at the weekend.

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Striker Carroll has yet to figure this season after aggravating an ankle problem during the summer, but he played 45 minutes of a behind-closed-doors friendly at Brentford last week and is in contention for a place on the bench.

Midfielder Wilshere, who has been out since the start of September with his ankle injury, is also back in training but may not be risked just yet.

Captain Mark Noble returns from a ban but fellow midfielder Robert Snodgrass is suspended.

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