Fredi Not Finished

Fredi Kanoute's season is not, he says, finished just yet.

It is significant that his early departure with a hip injury early in the game at Newcastle United left the Hammers looking very lightweight last week.

Although Fredi did not train until the Friday subsequent to that, Harry Redknapp took the risk of starting him against Leeds.

But, with his mobility clearly impaired, he went off in pain after just 10 minutes to once again be replaced by Svetoslav Todorov.

Harry admitted: "It didn't help losing Kanoute, although I am not making excuses.

"Once we lost Fredi we had no strength or pace, because he is our focal point and is so important to us.

"If he'd been fit then Rio Ferdinand would have had a game on his hands, because Kanoute ran Leeds ragged when we won 1-0 there earlier in the season."

Harry has stated that he is looking to buy a strike partner for him next season, while many observers would also like to see how Toddy would perform alongside such a physical presence.

The player himself says he will be back, insisting: "It's very disappointing and I will have to wait one or two weeks - but I think will be able to play before the end of the season."

*West Ham's reserve team fixture with Charlton, postponed from November 28, 2000, will now be played on the penultimate day of the season, May 18, at Chadwell Heath.

Kick off is at 2pm so if you aren't making the long trip to Middlesbrough but want a football fix before the summer, take the day off work and get down there!