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Have you got any injury updates for us?
“We will see on Lanzini for the Leicester City game because he took a knock during the Hull game in the first half and has missed some training sessions” “Sam Byram started training with the first team yesterday and Reece Oxford will start today. “James Collins will be back next week”.
What is your expectations for the Leicester game?
To continue on and build on the performances especially the one against Swansea. It will be a hard game but we are in form and we are very positive.
What have you made of their results this season?
The only way was down from last season because they performed one of the biggest achievements in football history last year so it was very hard for the management to sustain it. The Champions League has also been a distraction although they are doing very well in this. They have the quality and resources to turn it around.
What’s your reaction to Bob Bradley’s departure?
He didn’t get a fair chance. He wasn’t there long enough and he had no preseason with the squad and the games come thick and fast and it was very hard for him. I am not a fan of that kind of culture towards managers who do not get enough chance to establish their mark on a team. I wasn’t shocked about it though but I am disappointed.
The winning run that we are on how long will it continue?
I don’t know but we just hope that by putting the shifts in, confidence and fitness will increase and you don’t want it to stop but of course it will not last forever.
In terms of the strikers how happy are you with them?
It is better now, we have been missing them until now. It was a long period to be without Carroll, Ayew and Sakho and was a big blow for us.
With a player like Andy Carroll, who has had a lot of injuries, how do you manage someone who plays with no fear and help them prevent injuries?
Training prevents the injuries. It is wrong to think rest is the best way to do it. We don’t train all the time when games are close together but the best way to prevent injuries is through training.
Do you set him goalscoring targets?
No. He brings more to the team than just goals. He contributes in every aspects of the games.
With January round the corner, Evra has been linked? Any news?
We are the club linked with the most players in Europe. It is definitely not true with Evra, ok he is a great player and all that but we are very well covered in that position with Cresswell and Masuaku (Exactly the words of Ex on the radio show last night which you can listen to here: (http://www.phoenixfm.com/2016/12/28/the-west-ham-way-show-23/)
Will you be looking at domestic players?
There are lots of things we will be looking at and this is a factor that we would consider but you have to look at what is the best available. Yes we are trying for English or British players and we have priorities but even more so players with experience in the Premier League. I’m not saying it’s the best league but it is a different league so the risk is lower if they have played here before but they are very expensive. You hope all the players you are getting tick all the boxes. If they have experience, if they are handsome!
Does the current league position help attract players?
Yes, for the moment it helps but we are only half way through the season but things can change. We are always linked with players because we are an attractive club to play for.
How many players are you looking at?
We have to be careful we speak a lot about it but because of the African Nations we are going to be without three players so we need to replace them. We are ok if we don’t get any injuries or suspensions but we are tight it’s hard because you don’t want players who will just play a few games and then not play again. January is not a great time to buy, we are not going to panic but we will try. A maximum of three but we are not going to buy for the sake of buying.
Is one of those players Defoe?
He is a very good player. The way he plays for Sunderland and scores goals, he is a top player. I have a few midfielders from different countries saying his movement is the best that they have played with. He is a Sunderland player so I cannot speak about that.
Are you pleased or upset that Ayew is going to the African Nations having come back from injury?
It’s a big blow for us that he is going because he is looking good and building his fitness up after a long time out. Now he is going he won’t be able to show that for us but it is a big tournament for him where we cannot do anything about and I wouldn’t ever stop a player playing for his country.
Were your comments about players playing with a lack of intensity after Arsenal the turning point?
Yes but having players who attend training regularly is the most important thing and now their injuries are recovering we are starting to see that now.
On the back of the Tottenham penalty last night are you clear on the new rules?
Yes but rules that are not black or white are hard to explain. I didn’t watch the second half so I didn’t see it but I know what you mean, I am against double punishment. It can destroy the game. One punishment should be enough but then look at Palace; they had a penalty which should have a been a goal, they missed it so they got nothing however I am totally against double punishment.
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