Hales back at the Boleyn

Lee Hales has returned to West Ham United from his extended loan at Rushden & Diamonds.

The 18-year-old central midfielder joined the Conference club back in November and saw his initial two-month stay prolonged until the start of February. He played ten times for the club, including a goal in an FA Trophy match against Exeter.

Hales, capped by England at Under-16 and U17 level, is the son of Rushden assistant manager Kevin Hales. Before leaving the Boleyn Ground, Hales had been featuring regularly for West Ham United's reserve team - not least in the 2-2 home draw against Arsenal on 6 November.