Five popular West Ham academy players who were sold

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Imagine yourself watching a player produced from your club’s youth academy, only to sign for other big clubs and becoming their talisman. How would it feel? Proud, but a tad bit disappointed. Well, some of faithful Hammer fans would feel the same. Also known as “The Academy of Football” or just “The Academy”, West Ham have produced some of the finest English talents from their academy who unfortunately moved on to join bigger clubs and win big trophies for themselves. Some of them are reputed enough to be called as legendary figures of their respective clubs. Let’s have a look at some players on whom West Ham missed out:

5 West Ham Academy players who made a name for themselves

1. Frank Lampard

Frank Lampard

One of the England’s (in fact world’s) best goal scoring versatile midfielders ever, Frank Lampard started his professional career with West Ham in 1994. He then spent 7 years with his parent club scoring 24 goals in 148 appearances and also won UEFA Intertoto Cup in 1999. However upon his father receiving bad treatment from West Ham affected his relationship with the club and he decided to move on, joining Chelsea for £11 million in 2001. After that, he never looked back. He won 3 Premier League titles, 4 FA Cups, 2 League Cups, One Champions League and One Europa League to become one of the all-time greats of the game. He also scored 211 goals for his club while winning several individual awards, like PFA Player of The Season, UEFA Midfielder of The Year, etc.

2. Michael Carrick

michael-carrick

Recent FA Cup 2015-16 winner Michael Carrick also came through the ranks of West Ham. Actually, he went to Wallsend Boys Club for his footballing training but he signed his first professional contract with West Ham at the age of 16. After spending 2 years with the academy and winning the FA Youth Cup he was promoted to the senior team where he spent 5 years managing 136 appearances (as a defensive midfielder).

However, he spent his final year in First Division as West Ham were relegated the previous season. In 2005, he decided to leave West Ham United after the Hammers were not able to progress to the First Division. Carrick joined Tottenham on a deal worth £3.5 million. But even that didn’t last longer. After 2 years, Sir Alex Ferguson snapped him up for £14 million as a replacement for departing Roy Keane. Till now, he spent his whole career with United winning 5 Premier League Titles, 1 FA Cup, 1 League Cup, 1 Champions League Cup. He also had a place in 2012-13 season’s PFA Team of The Year.

3. Rio Ferdinand

rio-ferdinand

Former Manchester United and England legend Rio Ferdinand started his professional footballing career with West Ham in 1992 at the age of 14. After spending 4 years with the academy, he was promoted to the senior team. Surprisingly, he was also involved with Frank Lampard in West Ham’s UEFA Intertoto Cup win in 1999. He also was voted Hammer of The Year award in 1997-98 season at the age of just 19. After his brilliant performances, Leeds United decided to sign him for £18 million, a British transfer record as well as making him world’s most expensive defender in November 2000. He was also made club captain the successive year, however, they failed to qualify for Champions League. During 2002 FIFA WC, rumors started to circulate that Leeds were in financial trouble and then the manager will have to sell Rio for substantial amount of price. Manchester United came to their rescue, signing Rio for a staggering £29.1 million. Rio then went on to win a record 6 Premier League titles, 3 League Cups and 1 Champions League for Manchester United. He also won PFA Team of The Year for 6 times and featured in FIFPro World XI 2007-08.

During 2002 FIFA WC, rumors started to circulate that Leeds were in financial trouble and then manager will have to sell Rio for a substantial amount of price. Manchester United came to their rescue, signing Rio for a staggering £29.1 million. Rio then went on to win a record 6 Premier League titles, 3 League Cups and 1 Champions League for Manchester United. He also won PFA Team of The Year for 6 times and featured in FIFPro World XI 2007-08.

4. Glen Johnson

glen-johnson

Former Chelsea and Liverpool right-back Glen Johnson joined West Ham academy at the age of 16. After spending 2 years, he was promoted to the senior professional team but only spent 1 year as West Ham got relegated the same year. Chelsea then went on to sign him for £6 million, the first purchase of Roman Abramovich’s era. While his team won the Premier League title and League Cup next year, he couldn’t win a medal as he spent most of his time on sidelines making only 4 appearances in the whole season. Afterwards, he joined Portsmouth on a season long-loan which was converted to a permanent signing the successive year for £4 million. He did help the team winning the FA Cup. He also won Goal of The Season for a 30-yard screamer against Hull City. He was also included in PFA Team of The Year despite Portsmouth finishing in bottom half. In 2009, Portsmouth accepted a bid of £17.5 million from Liverpool for his signing. He won a League Cup with Liverpool in 2011-12. Currently, he is playing for Stoke City which signed him from Liverpool where he spent 6 years.

Afterwards, he joined Portsmouth on a season long-loan which was converted to a permanent signing the successive year for £4 million. He did help the team winning the FA Cup. He also won Goal of The Season for a 30-yard screamer against Hull City. He was also included in PFA Team of The Year despite Portsmouth finishing in bottom half. In 2009, Portsmouth accepted a bid of £17.5 million from Liverpool for his signing. He won a League Cup with Liverpool in 2011-12. Currently, he is playing for Stoke City which signed him from Liverpool where he spent 6 years.

5. John Terry

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Surprised? Shocked? Well, I will be surprised if you are not surprised. Even I felt the same upon hearing this that he ever had a relation to West Ham despite being known as Chelsea faithful. Somehow he had. In fact, he was a part of West Ham’s academy for 4 years as a midfielder. But later he went on to sign his first professional contract with Chelsea at the age of 14, later being converted as a centre back. Popularly known as Mr.Chelsea, he has won 4 Premier League titles, 5 FA Cups, 3 Football League Cups, 1 Champions League and 1 Europa League (similar to Frank Lampard). He has also won several individual awards such as PFA Player’s Player of The Year, PFA Team of The Year(4), UEFA Club Defender of The Year(3), UEFA Team of The Year(3), FIFPro WorldXI(5) times. Though he will remain the one and only Mr.Chelsea forever, it can be argued that West Ham should have persuaded him better.

Popularly known as Mr.Chelsea, he has won 4 Premier League titles, 5 FA Cups, 3 Football League Cups, 1 Champions League and 1 Europa League (similar to Frank Lampard). He has also won several individual awards such as PFA Player’s Player of The Year, PFA Team of The Year(4), UEFA Club Defender of The Year(3), UEFA Team of The Year(3), FIFPro WorldXI(5) times. Though he will remain the one and only Mr.Chelsea forever, it can be argued that West Ham should have persuaded him better.

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