x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Allardyce hopes to hold on to Pedersen

Sam Allardyce is crossing his fingers that Morten Gamst Pedersen will sign a new deal but admits the midfielder will have been made more lucrative offers by other clubs.

Sam Allardyce is crossing his fingers that Morten Gamst Pedersen will sign a new deal but admits the midfielder will have been made more lucrative offers by other clubs. The Norway international is out of contract at the end of the season and has been made an offer to stay by Blackburn, whom the 28-year-old joined in 2004. "We have gone as far as we can from a financial point of view and have made the best offer we can make," said Allardyce.

"I'm sure he can better that offer elsewhere, I'm positive about that - there are plenty of people out there who would like to grab Morten on the basis of his experience and his capability of playing. "Being on a free transfer could bring far greater financial advantage than probably we have offered. "But hopefully he will balance that against the fact that he's had a great career here and that he's a regular."

Blackburn will today be without Chris Samba (groin) and Brett Emerton (hamstring) for the trip to Wolves, while El Hadji Diouf is doubtful after suffering from tonsilitis. Wolves midfielder Matt Jarvis is a doubt with a thigh strain suffered at Fulham last weekend. Karl Henry completes a ban. Wolves v Blackburn, 6pm, Showmovies Kids

Gianfranco Zola is banking on some Carlton Cole heroics to fire West Ham towards safety against Wigan today. The Hammers are three points outside the relegation zone and a victory at Upton Park, combined with a Hull defeat to Sunderland, would effectively secure their top-flight status. Cole has not scored in nine league games and is struggling with a persistent knee injury, which forced him to be replaced early in Monday's defeat at Liverpool. But Zola is convinced the striker is saving his best goalscoring form for when it really matters .

"Carlton hasn't scored for a while but he's keeping an important one back for us," said Zola. "I'm relying on that. He hasn't scored many goals but he is an important player for us." West Ham were panned for their performance in Monday's 3-0 defeat at Liverpool, after which the players admitted to Zola they had let him down. "We know we need a reaction," said the manager. "It's a massive game for us and the last game wasn't very good.

The Hammers will be boosted by the return of dynamic midfielder Scott Parker. Luis Boa Morte could make the bench after 11 months out with a knee injury. West Ham v Wigan, 6pm, Showsports 1 & 2