West Ham new signing won’t play at Doncaster

Hammers loan signing George McCartney will not feature at the Keepmoat Stadium on Saturday.

West Ham boss Sam Allardyce is delighted to have secured the loan signing of former Hammer George McCartney, but he will not be making his debut at Doncaster Rovers on Saturday.

The 30-year-old left back re-signed for West Ham on a season-long loan on Wednesday and Allardyce is hoping that the Northern Ireland international can help return the club to the Premier League.

“He’s a very good player who has lost his way in the last season or so since he went back to Sunderland,” said the manager. “But when you look back on his history at the club, he was a very popular player here and a very good one.”

Injury and a loss of form meant that McCartney spent much of last season on loan at Championship rivals Leeds United, but the Elland Road club did not pursue their interest in the player.

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“We see it as an opportunity for us to come together and be as good as we used to be. The club used to be in the Premier League under George, so hopefully he can help us get back there and he can secure a full-time contract here with us.”

He will not go straight into the first team however, despite being fit.

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“His fitness is very good,” insisted Allardyce. “He is just lacking a competitive game or two because he has only played two or three games in the reserves at Sunderland.

“He completed the whole of their pre-season so hopefully a couple of behind closed doors game and then we see where he lies and goes into the squad on the bench.”

The manager has pencilled in the Carling Cup tie against Aldershot on August 24 as a possible return for the popular defender.

“It would be nice to get him started in the Aldershot game and the same goes for John Carew as well as some of the other lads who want to impress me as a manager to select them in the first team and to put the pressure on the lads who own the shirts at the moment.”

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