Tony Cottee Column: West Ham must now concentrate on themselves

15:35 11 April 2012

West Ham manager Sam Allardyce .

West Ham manager Sam Allardyce .

Rob Newell/TGSPHOTO c/o 27 Plaiters Way, Braintree, Essex, CM7 3LR - Editorial Use ONLY - FA Premier League and Football League

“The play-offs provide a fantastic opportunity for the fans to potentially enjoy a day out at Wembley.”

It has been a real period of mixed emotions for West Ham fans over the Easter break. Firstly we had the joy of comprehensively winning at Barnsley, scoring four goals and setting a new club record.

However, this was short-lived as on Monday evening at half time, the Hammers found themselves 3-1 down, having been punished by Birmingham City.

That disappointment was overcome by an inspirational second-half display from Sam Allardyce’s side as West Ham managed to claw two goals back and were unlucky not to actually win the game.

Fast forward 24 hours, and the picture doesn’t look so bright for Hammers fans, as Reading’s lucky win at Brighton means that the Royals, along with Southampton, are now six points clear of West Ham at the top of the league.

With only four games to go, our chances of automatic promotion look to be slipping away.

Of course, Reading do still have to go to Southampton and then Birmingham on the last day of the season, but in a way the Hammers’ fate could well now be out of their own hands.

All West Ham can do now is focus on their remaining four games of the season and go all out to win them all.

There is no point worrying about what the other teams will be getting up to as we can only affect what we do on the pitch.

If the Hammers do end up in the play-offs then it isn’t the end of the world.

Sometimes it is more fun to get promoted via the play-offs, and they provide a fantastic opportunity for the fans and their families to potentially enjoy a day out at Wembley.

What will be important if we do end up finishing in third place is that we build up momentum between now and the end of the season.

The second half of the Birmingham game will hopefully kick-start things and the lads should be buzzing ahead of this weekend’s game against Brighton.

Let’s face it, it is about time that West Ham managed to get a win at Upton Park and I believe that we will end our home hoodoo on Saturday.

Gus Poyet has created a Brighton side that like to play good football, but the Seagulls haven’t had the best results of late away from home, so we have to hit the ground running and have a real go at them from the first whistle.

I actually think that Brighton’s style of play will suit the Hammers better than a side that comes to Upton Park looking to put 10 men behind the ball and play on the counter attack.

We only have to look back to when Blackpool came to east London, tried to play good football and ended up getting beaten 4-0.

Another performance like that would certainly set the Hammers up nicely for the season run-in.

Before that though, I imagine all eyes will be on St Mary’s tomorrow night (Friday) when Reading visit the Saints and I hope that the game lives up to its expectations.

I don’t think that there can really be a bad outcome for West Ham as one, if not both, of the two sides will drop some points.

With only four games to go, I’m sure that there could be one last twist in the race for automatic promotion from the Championship.

Watch this space.

Tony Cottee was talking to Nathaniel John

Live Blog Transfer Window Live - July 29

 

Latest Stories

Fusilier Lee Rigbywas killed whilst off duty near Woolwich Barracks by Michael Adebowale and Michael Adebolajo in May 2013  (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)

The father of Drummer Lee Rigby, the soldier who was brutally murdered in Woolwich last year, has said it is ‘disgusting’ that his son’s killers received £200,000 from the state to pay for their legal costs.

Read more
21 minutes ago
Hot pants! Be careful with your tumble-drying, or this could happen to your home[Photo courtesy of London Fire Brigade]

A fire that tore through a laundrette in Bromley was caused by a pile of tuble-dried clothes.

Read more
People enjoy the Royal Victoria beach as temperatures reaches 28C in London.

This weekend saw London’s biggest manmade beach open at the Royal Victoria Dock in Canning Town.

Read more

Promotions

Renault-Zoe

The Renault ZOE follows on from the introduction of the electric Fluence ZE and Twizy, but unlike the former, the Zoe was designed from the ground up as an electric vehicle.

When no simple way to find Real Ale was at hand, 4 Ale enthusiasts got together to allow anyone with a smart phone to find Real Ale no matter where they happened to be, this was the birth of the Perfect Pint app.

London24 have partnered up with The Week magazine to offer you a complimentary issue – delivered free to your door.

TOP STORIES

Quizzes

Guess the managers quiz

The managerial merry-go-round spins quickly these days so do you think you’ve got the knowledge to recognise the faces of all these football bosses?

Read more
Croatia's Daniel Prajnic, France's Paul Pogba and Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo... three hair-raising World Cup stars (Picture: Archant/Getty)

The World Cup is a showcase of fantastic football... and terrible hairstyles. Try this quiz and test your knowledge of the wackiest barnets in Brazil.

Read more
World Cup countries quiz

It's about time you refreshed your brains about the countries competing in Brazil.

Read more
Which London club play their home games at this stadium...? (Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)

Do you fancy yourself as a football ground buff? Test your stadium knowledge with this brilliant quiz.

Read more

West Ham Transfer News

Ecuador's Enner Valencia in action (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

West Ham have confirmed the signing of striker Enner Valencia after he was granted a work permit on Tuesday afternoon.

Read more
Keep up to date with all the latest transfer news from London24

Follow the latest transfer news and gossip with London24’s live blog.

Read more
Keep up to date with all the latest transfer news from London24

Follow the latest transfer news and gossip with London24’s live blog.

Read more
Carl Jenkinson. (Photo by Jordan Mansfield/Getty Images)

West Ham are set to announce the season-long loan signing of Carl Jenkinson from Arsenal.

Read more
Dundee United youngster Andrew Roberston (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

Dundee United defender Andrew Robertson will only sign for an English club if it will further progress his career.

Read more