Tony Cottee Column: I’m keeping the faith, but believe Wembley is West Ham’s destiny
“All the Hammers can do now is make sure that they beat Hull City by as many goals as possible.”
What a brilliant way for West Ham to round off their away games for the season on Monday night with a superb win at another of my old clubs, Leicester City.
The Hammers had a whole heap of pressure on them following Southampton’s loss at Middlesbrough the weekend before, but I thought that we dealt with it amazingly well.
It would have been easy for us to have been beaten, but we showed real courage and determination to come from a goal down to secure three points.
The Foxes scored a good goal to be fair, but it was disappointing from our point of view to concede at a point where we were dominating the game.
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However, West Ham showed tremendous spirit to equalise just five minutes later through Winston Reid, who I think when fit is a great central defender, in our box and the opposition’s.
As soon as we scored and silenced the home crowd, I knew that there was only one team that was going to go on and win the game.
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We came out all guns firing in the second half and it was just a matter of time before we started creating chances.
And just before the hour mark, Jack Collison scored a great goal to give us the lead for the first time.
I was delighted to see Jack back in the team and back on the scoresheet as it has been a really difficult last two years for him.
Since his knee injury, he has had to work really hard to get back into the first team and it just goes to show the confidence that Sam Allardyce has in the Wales international to play him every week at this crucial part of the season.
The one negative for me on Monday is that we didn’t manage to score any more goals as goal difference could well be crucial, but the important thing was getting the three points to remain within striking distance of Southampton.
The victory also gives us some momentum going into the last game and what could possibly be the play-offs.
I feel like our destiny is not in our own hands, and I fully expect Southampton to beat Coventry, but who knows? Stranger things have happened in football before, just look at what happened in the Nou Camp with Chelsea and Barcelona!
All the Hammers can do now is make sure that they beat Hull City this Saturday and make sure that it is by as many goals as possible.
The Tigers have had a funny season really with their change of manager, but they have players like Matty Fryatt and Aaron McLean that will pose a threat to our defence.
I think that we will have too much for Hull though and that another win will keep the confidence high.
The last home game of the season is always great to play in and the sold out atmosphere should be fantastic.
Personally, I still think that a Wembley play-off final is West Ham’s destiny this season, and it would be a just reward for all of the fans that have stuck by the club through thick and thin.
As is stands, the Hammers would play Cardiff City in the play-off semi-finals and I think that the Bluebirds along with Middlesbrough would be my preferred opponents.
I think that Blackpool and Birmingham are dangerous sides, and a final against either of those two teams would be dangerous.
However, we will cross that bridge if or when it comes to that.
For now, all we can do is get behind the team and cheer them on to what could be three vital points this weekend.
Come on you Irons!
Tony Cottee was talking to Nathaniel John