Following a poor christmas period for the Hammers, here are why they are still on track.
Time and time again Big Sam has referred to two points a game on average, in order to gain promotion. 25 games in and West Ham are only three points off that mark. Following a poor Christmas period, which included only two wins in seven for the Hammers, and being knocked out of the FA Cup, it is still not time to panic. Results have favoured West Ham; Southampton lost to Brighton and Bristol City, and Blackpool made easy work of a victory against Middlesbrough, who a week before could only manage a draw with Peterborough at home, denting fourth place Borough's consistent form.
The third round knockout in the Cup to Sheffield Wednesday was not a huge shock when you consider the starting eleven. Allardyce clearly set out to rest key players, and give a chance to those not quite hitting top form. It was a shame to not see youngsters Frank Nouble and Robert Hall get a start. Nouble has impressed of late, and Hall has had a successful loan spell at Oxford United netting five goals in thirteen. Nevertheless this defeat is not something to mull over for long. If West Ham want a cup run they can simply bring back Avram Grant, I’m sure that will be an appointment to please the Hammers faithful. Now they can get back to business and focus on the one and only aim of the season; promotion.
Finally, the transfer period is going to be essential to determine success come May. The Hammers are struggling to score goals. Carlton Cole is on top form, and key to the team’s success, but he is never going to be a 25 goal a season striker. Neither is Sam Baldock, yet. Baldock has proven his goal scoring worth for MK Dons in League One, but he is inexperienced at Championship level, and when March and April come around West Ham need a player with experience and goal-scoring know how. On a final note, the Hammers cannot sell James Tomkins. I will give David Gold and Sullivan credit for their commitment to West Ham; they kept Scott Parker for an extra season in the 2010/11 campaign, something I thought wouldn’t happen. The two David’s are West Ham through and through despite what critics might say, and I believe they will keep hold of their star defender.