PHOTOS: The best of Mascherano and Tevez at West Ham ahead of Upton Park return

Tevez On The Charge

Javier Mascherano and Carlos Tevez return to Upton Park tonight.

Emotions may run high for Javier Mascherano and Carlos Tevez tonight, as they feature for Argentina against Croatia in an international friendly.

Yet, tonight's game isn't any ordinary friendly for the duo. It marks their return to Upton Park, where they both played for West Ham after the most controversial Premier League transfer in recent memory.

Mascherano and Tevez were playing in Argentina with River Plate and Boca Juniors respectively, but were both acquired for big money by Kia Joorabchian, founder of Media Sports Investments.

They were then sent off to Brazil with Corinthians, before completing a contentious move to West Ham, once again driven by Joorabchian.

The pair eventually left East London for Liverpool and Manchester United respectively, but here are the best images that tell the story of their time with the Hammers...

August 31st, 2006: Tevez and Mascherano joined West Ham after the World Cup in Germany, representing a huge coup for the club given that they'd been strongly linked with Chelsea and Manchester United that same summer.

September 10th, 2006: Tevez makes his debut coming on as a substitute in West Ham's 1-1 draw with Aston Villa, replacing Marlon Harewood in the 61st minute. Mascherano was an unused substitute in this game, with manager Alan Pardew preferring to Hayden Mullins and Nigel Reo-Coker in midfield.

September 17th, 2006: Mascherano did get his first Premier League start just a week later though, as he featured in midfield for the Hammers in their 2-0 defeat against Newcastle United, but was replaced by Yossi Benayoun after 67 minutes.

February 24th, 2007: After just five starts for West Ham, Mascherano was loaned out to Liverpool within six months of joining West Ham. He made his debut against Sheffield United, and eventually made his move to Anfield permanent, where he became a fan favourite.

March 4th, 2007: Tevez finally scored his first West Ham goal in the local derby with Tottenham, whipping a sublime free kick past Paul Robinson to give West Ham a 2-0 lead. Whilst the Hammers would eventually lose the game 4-3, Tevez's celebration - taking his shirt off and running into the Upton Park crowd - will live long in the memory of West Ham fans.

May 5th, 2007: His goal against Tottenham sparked an incredible run of goalscoring, and Tevez bagged twice against Bolton to lead a 3-1 win, taking West Ham out of the bottom three as the Argentine almost single handedly dragged West Ham to the verge of Premier League survival.

May 13th, 2007: Yet no goal meant as much as his strike at Old Trafford on the final day of the season, as his deft finish past Edwin van der Sar gave West Ham a shock 1-0 win over Manchester United, relegating Sheffield United and keeping West Ham - and much of that great escape was down to Tevez.

August 10th, 2007: Tevez's time at West Ham came to an end less than a year after his arrival, as Sir Alex Ferguson was suitably impressed with him, snapping him up on a two-year loan deal from Joorabchian's agency. Tevez scored 34 goals in just 99 games for the Red Devils, but made himself an enemy by then joining Manchester City.

He may have only scored seven goals in 29 games for West Ham, but they all came in a crucial stage of the 2006-07 season, and he became the talisman that the Hammers needed to drag themselves out of the bottom three.

Mascherano's time at Upton Park was indifferent and ultimately disappointing, but both can expect a great reception when they take to the field for Argentina tonight.

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