Jones arrives on trial

Welsh international goalkeeper Paul Jones has arrived on a short trial at Upton Park, and admits he would be delighted to earn a permanent contract with the Hammers.

The 38-year-old, who left Wolves for the second time in his career last week after his contract was terminated by mutual consent, will initially spend a week with Alan Pardew's men, but is hoping that he can make a big enough impression to warrant an extended stay.

Reflecting on the sudden chain of events that saw him switch the Championship for the Premiership, the former Kidderminster, Stockport and Southampton stopper - who also made two loan appearances for Liverpool a couple of years ago - reveals that an old team-mate played a key role in setting up the trial.

"It all happened very quickly," says the 44-times capped international. "I got a phone call last week from Kevin Keen, who I played with at Wolves back in the early 90s, and he told me that Alan Pardew wanted to know if I had any plans.

"I told him that I was a bit in limbo after leaving Wolves, so when Alan suggested that I come down here and see how things go, I jumped at the chance.

"Obviously Roy Carroll is injured at the moment and Jimmy Walker is just coming back, so he is a bit short of goalkeepers, and it's a chance for me to get my fitness up to scratch and hopefully show what I can do.

"I've had a couple of offers from elsewhere, but when a club like West Ham United comes along and offers you a chance, you can't turn it down - especially at my age!

"I'm happy to be training with the squad and I've got an open mind about how things might pan out. Hopefully I can impress Alan enough to earn a longer stay here.

"It would certainly be fantastic if I could secure myself a deal here, because it would be great to finish my career in the Premiership."

Paul has also been greeted by some familiar faces at the Chadwell Heath training ground - his national team colleagues Danny Gabbidon, James Collins and Carl Fletcher - and admits that the current feel-good factor surrounding the Club is clearly evident to any newcomers.

"Yeah, it's been nice to see the Welsh lads here," he says. "I get on well with Danny, James and Carl, and the other lads all seem a great bunch, too.

"It's obviously a great time to have arrived at the Club - the team are doing really well in the Premiership at the moment and you can tell straight away that the spirit among the squad is very special.

"Whatever happens at the end of the week, it's great for me to be here, and I'm grateful to Alan Pardew for giving me this opportunity."

The Hammers boss says: "I'm more than happy to have Paul here working with our goalkeepers, and I've left it open as to how things go from here. He is a highly experienced goalkeeper, and a fantastic professional to have in the dressing-room, so we've welcomed him with open arms."