West Ham captain Mark Noble would 'love' first game at the Olympic Stadium to be his testimonial

Olympic Stadium 2

New West Ham United captain Mark Noble has admitted he would love the club's first game at the Olympic Stadium to be his testimonial match.

Having been in West Ham's first team since the age of 17 back in 2004, Noble has completed more than 10 years of service at his boyhood club.

Traditionally that would have led to a testimonial match in the player's honour. And West Ham are a traditional club.

In recent years they held a testimonial for Academy legend Tony Carr which saw former West Ham youngsters like Rio Ferdinand, Frank Lampard and John Terry turn out.

The last testimonial before that was for current first team coach Julian Dicks, who famously played in an ill-tempered match against Athletic Bilbao at Upton Park.

The Hammers are playing the last ever season at their beloved Boleyn Ground home of 112 years before a big move to the 54,000 seater Olympic Stadium in Stratford next summer.

'It would be special and I'd love it'

And Noble has admitted he would 'love' the first game there to be his testimonial, should he be granted one.

The midfielder was appearing as a guest on TalkSport this week in the wake of his side's historic 3-0 win over Liverpool at Anfield – in which he scored and was wrongly sent off and put the ball firmly in the court of co-owners David Sullivan and David Gold.

"You’d have to speak to the chairmen about that one," Noble told the Sports Breakfast when asked about the possibility of an Olympic sized testimonial.

"It would certainly be a special thing and I would love to do something like that.

"West Ham is a very special club for me, everyone knows that. It’s a club that is moving forward with the new stadium and with the calibre of players that we’re signing. We’re really pushing onto the next level."

Arsenal set a precedent

Arsenal came to a similar arrangement for Dennis Bergkamp when they moved from Highbury to the Emirates.

But could and should Noble be awarded the same honour?

Well one thing is for sure Noble is a dyed-in-the-wool Hammer from birth and has consistently been a first-team regular since breaking into the senior side aged 17.

He is Mr West Ham, the closest you will get to a fan on the pitch.

The 28-year-old Canning Town-born player has played 282 games for his boyhood club, scoring 33 goals and is the club's main penalty taker.

Mark Noble: Did you know?

In fact not only is he the longest serving player in West Ham's current squad, but he has also overtaken Steve Potts as the club's leading Premier League appearance holder after breaking his record of 204 top flight games in the claret and blue.

He is also in good company when it comes to leaving a legacy having been named the club's prestigious Hammer of the Year twice.

In 2014 he was also ranked in the top five penalty takers in the top European leagues and was in the top 10 in the world based on the percentage of penalties successfully converted since 2009.

Should Mark Noble be granted a testimonial as the first game at the Olympic Stadium?

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