Wednesday, 20th March 2019
What the Hammers can do this year and next
Filed: Thursday, 14th March 2019
Author: Staff Writer #3
West Ham have been playing moderately well this season and are currently ranked tenth in the Premier League. They’ve played in the Premier League for a total of nineteen seasons, and the highest they’ve finished was 5th place in 1998/99.
They finished third in the league in 85/86, which is their highest ever position in the top division. But the question that preoccupies fans and live betting sites alike is, what can they realistically achieve this season, and how do they push to the next level next season?
When asked to judge the season, West Ham Boss Manuel Pellegrini believes that it’s too early to assess how much progress West Ham have made. He doesn’t think it’s a good idea to review a season when West Ham have to play another eleven games, with thirty-three points to play for, all the while being just four points away from seventh or eight position.
He told reporters ‘I think the club is improving in every sense – we have a strong squad, the training ground…and I hope that this is a good process and in a couple of years we will continue improving.’ He went on to say, ‘We are never fighting for relegation, we always try to have a winning mentality, so that answer I will give you in the last week of the league.’
West ham defender Pablo Zabaleta told the Telegraph that West Ham have been on good form this season, especially against the top teams. He says that the Hammers have failed three or four times to get to seventh position, and goes on to comment, ‘that's something we've been talking about, how good it would be to finish seventh and to try and play in the Europa League next season.’
He says that the team have had good chances, such as against Watford and Bournemouth, but they lost. ‘If you want to have a good season,’ he says, ‘you just need that consistency and be able to play well enough week in week out. I can't say we'll win every single game, you can't. This is the strongest league and you have to respect the other teams.’
He goes on to say, ‘It's very difficult to win games in this league, but sometimes we play really well and win games, but five days later we can put in a really poor performance. We just need to find that consistency if you want to be a better team. Every player needs to be on it, they have to feel proud to play for West Ham and to make this club better.’
As far as next season goes, it’s not just Pablo Zabaleta who wants to finish seventh and attempt to play in the Europa League. Pellegrini has taken control of four European teams in previous years, leading them all into continental competitions, and he aims to do the same with West Ham.
He told the Daily Mail, 'It would be a very important achievement for the team, the players, for me and for everyone. In all the years I have worked here in Europe I have always qualified for European competitions. We have an opportunity and that is why we need to play so well in these 11 remaining games.’
So The Hammers still have some work to do to push on to the next level the following season, but when on top form they been playing with nerve and verve, all the while acknowledging that it’s extremely difficult to win matches in this league.