Argentinian stars reassured by Pardew over Hammers future
November 23, 2006 7:25pm CST
by Tony Stevens November 23, 2006 LONDON (AFP) - West Ham manager Alan Pardew has told Argentinian stars Javier Mascherano and Carlos Tevez they have a future at Upton Park -- despite this week's takeover of the club. The players were brought to London by Iranian-born businessman Kia Joorabchian, who lost out in his bid to buy the club to Icelandic tycoon Eggert Magnusson. Both Tevez and Mascherano have failed to make an impact on the Premiership so far and rumours the pair will move on in January are now rife. But Pardew is hopeful Magnusson's takeover can have a positive effect on their Premiership careers. "They're owned by the person whose takeover didn't happen, and that might be a problem," the Hammers boss said. "But I hope that they begin to grow here quicker than they have done in the previous period, and I think that can happen. "Once everything settles down, it would be wise to have a conversation with Kia to reassure the players that there is no issue. "They're here to play football, and they will be judged on their ability on the training field and in games. I'll meet with Kia and talk to him how that fits into his plans for them." Pardew is quick to remind critics that both Tevez and Mascherano are still only 22 and speak no English. Combined with the expectation levels weighing on them after their high-profile transfers from Corinthians of Brazil in late August, the manager feels they have not been given a fair chance to shine in English football. But Pardew insists the efforts of the Argentine internationals in training has been first-class and hopes they can be given the remainder of the season to adjust properly to life in a foreign country. He added: "Some of the criticism our guys have had in their settling in period has been unfair. They've gone through huge changes and still haven't got a grasp of English yet. But they're working on it and their work in training has been excellent." "They are two kids and it's unfortunate that this process has started in this way. Again, we find ourselves in another strange position, but I hope it works out for them." Club captain Nigel Reo-Coker added: "They are trying to adapt but people don't realise how big a change it is for them to come from South America to Europe at only 22. "It's a big culture shock, so it's been very hard for them. But we've always been very supportive and tried to make them feel comfortable." However midfielder Hayden Mullins, who has regain his place at Mascherano's expense, believes the Argentine duo's arrival at Upton Park, as well as the speculation over the club's ownership, did have an adverse affect on the team. He told West Ham's website: "When Carlos and Javier came in and the whole whirlwind started, it did have a bit of an effect. "The takeover speculation has been going on for a while now, and the players didn't really know too much about what was going on, so to have it resolved is a relief. "But we certainly can't blame the takeover for the losing run we had between September and October. We know we are a good team, and now we are starting to prove it again."