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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Aug 31, 2006

Hammers complete Tevez, Mascherano deal

West Ham have completed the sensational double signing of Carlos Tevez and Javier Mascherano from Corinthians on permanent contracts.

The Argentinian duo, who both starred for their country at the World Cup this summer, move to Upton Park for undisclosed fees.

A statement on the West Ham website read: 'The transfers represent a massive coup for the Hammers, who have beaten off some of Europe's biggest clubs to secure the services of the duo.'

West Ham have refused to divulge details of the double deal but Tevez and Mascherano commanded £15million transfer fees when they signed for Corinthians from Argentinian clubs Boca Juniors and River Plate.

There has also been speculation that West Ham have managed to steal a march on bigger rivals with a view to selling them on next season.

But Hammers media spokesman Phil Hall insisted: 'There is no way West Ham would act as a feeder club for others.

'These are exciting signings for us but, of course, if we were offered major fees for the players at a later date we would have to consider it - as we would with other players.'

Corinthians president Alberto Dualib has admitted that talks with MSI are likely to clarify the situation of the two stars on Wednesday, with the Argentinian media suggesting that the duo are expected to make their way to England.

The duo's agent Adrian Ruocco was believed to be personally involved in negotiations with West Ham to complete the deal before tonight's transfer deadline.

Whilst Tevez had been expected to leave Corinthians after staying away from the club for the past week, Mascherano had also also gone AWOL with arguments continuing over his availability for the Brazil friendly.

Corinthians were not keen on the midfielder travelling for the tie, even though he is suspended domestically, and relations between the parties reached a new low after coach Leao confirmed Mascherano had skipped training.

Leao said: 'I began the practice at 8.30 am and there was no sign of Mascherano.

'I have not received any official message from him and the case has been passed to the directors.'

Both players are available for West Ham's next Barclays Premiership match - at home to Villa on September 9 - but manager Alan Pardew is likely to hold them back for the UEFA Cup clash with Palermo at Upton Park a few days later.

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