December 7 2013 Latest news:
Dave Evans, West Ham Correspondent
Thursday, July 12, 2012
West Ham’s opening six games avoid any of the big Premier League teams, but does that mean it is a soft start?
There must have been many West Ham fans jumping for joy when the fixture list came out last month.
Not only were the Hammers back in the Premier League, they had also been given the sort of fixtures in the first six games that they could only have dreamed about.
One man who was certainly pleased with the fixtures was manager Sam Allardyce, according to striker Nicky Maynard.
“The gaffer has already said to us that when you look at the first few games, they could have been a lot harder,” revealed Maynard after Tuesday night’s 1-1 friendly draw at Boreham Wood.
“But it is still down to us to get off to a great start and the better start we have, the better chance of staying in the league.
“If we can do that, then come Christmas time we can start enjoying our football a lot more without the worry of relegation.”
It sounds idyllic, but there were words of caution from experienced and wise head Matt Taylor who is not taken in by the idea of easy games.
“For me, every game in the Premier League is not an easy game,” insisted Taylor.
“I have never played in an easy game in the Premier League and this season will be the same.
“A lot of teams might go into a game against Manchester United in a different mindset to a game against a lesser team, which I think is wrong.
“We’re going into every game this season believing we can win, because if you don’t have that winning mentality, then I don’t think there is any point in playing.”
One thing is for certain, although as Taylor says, there are no easy games in the top flight, there are certainly some that are easier than others.
Looking at West Ham’s clashes against the likes of Swansea City, Norwich City, Sunderland and QPR, they will certainly be looking to take advantage and post some early points.