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The Toe Poke
By ESPN Staff

Magnusson reassurance over Hammers finance

West Ham chairman Eggert Magnusson maintains the financing of the Icelandic takeover of the Premiership club is 'sound and secure'.

The Hammers today announced Alan Curbishley as their new manager, with the former Charlton boss likely to be handed substantial funds to attract new talent to Upton Park during the January transfer window.

Magnusson is part of the consortium which agreed an £85million deal for the east London club, which also included an agreement to take on West Ham's £22.5million debt.

Reports the package could harm the Hammers long-term financial security were promptly dismissed by the Icelander at this afternoon's press conference to unveil their new boss.

'I want to set the record straight,' Magnusson said, before reading from a prepared statement.

'The financing of the takeover is sound and secure, and in no way secured against the assets of the club.

'West Ham have no repayment or interest obligations in relation to the financing of our deal.

'The club will only pay dividends to investors if the commercial success of the club warranted that.

'The owners have no intentions of paying dividends over the next two years as we build the next phase of the club's developments.

'On the contrary we have the funds and the intention to invest further in this club.'

Curbishley, who started his career at Upton Park, has no qualms about working for a club which is now under foreign ownership.

He said: 'There has been a new owner at Aston Villa which no-body had ever heard of and Martin O'Neill is not suffering too much.

'Alex Ferguson has also had new owners at Manchester United.

'What I have been assured is I am in total control of the playing side, the ins and outs. If I want a player or to let a player go, that is my decision.

'I am looking forward to it.'