“Meeting the guys – they were good guys – surrounded by lawyers and people when I met them briefly. It was difficult because it didn’t add up, why were they coming to West Ham when they should perhaps be at Arsenal, Manchester United or Liverpool?

“It didn’t really make sense and the group that I had were players that I’d just taken out the Championship, I was loyal to them and suddenly now we’ve got two international superstars.

“It was weird but the guys were great. Tevez hadn’t played for about eight months and was completely out of sorts in terms of where he was so we really needed to put some work into him but [Javier] Mascherano was ready to go and they were both really great lads.

“Tevez was left-field and automatically bonded with the lads because he was just a bit weird, he’d come in with an outfit and everyone would go: ‘Blimey! Have you seen Tevez, what he’s got on?’


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