Youngsters Coming Through

There are high hopes that the famous West Ham academy will produce a couple more nuggets come the end of the forthcoming season.

That is the view of Glenn Roeder, who reckons his side could be one of the youngest in the league by the time the next campaign draws to a close.

The fervent hope around Upton Park is that the seemingly relentless procession of teenagers breaking through into the first team in recent years is not about to end, and he explains:

"There are three exciting young talents in the first team - two 20 year olds and a 19 year old - and I don't think there was another club in the Premiership who had three that age in the first team last season.

"Hopefully we have got one or two coming up behind those three that will be pushing for a place on the bench at the start of the season.

"I am not expecting too much of them before Christmas, but hopefully the likes of Glen Johnson and Anton Ferdinand, just to name two, could be pushing for a place in the first team squad."

And Glenn is still looking to bring in young talent from elsewhere, following last week's capture of Youssef Sofiane from Auxerre.

"It is nice to be able to secure an 18 year old of big potential," he says, "and now there still might be a possibility of bringing in one or two senior players before the season starts.

"But while we bring in a couple of young players - and I have got my eye on another now - it will reduce the age of the squad, which is not particularly old anyway."