Filed: Thursday, 2nd July 2015
By: Staff Writer
Kevin Nolan believes a successful run in the Europa League could make for a difficult season - although he has urged tonight's team to fully embrace the opportunity.
Now 32 and entering the final year of his contract at the club, Nolan is unlikely to play a major role in this season's European campaign but has plenty of experience of doing so, having featured for Bolton in the (now defunct) UEFA Cup during the mid-noughties.
And having experienced the additional demands required by a good run in Europe - which could potentially account for an extra 23 games for West Ham to play this season, should they reach the Final - Nolan is more aware than most of the difficulties than can arise as a result.
"It's going to make everything tough but it's something that we should all embrace, " he said. "We got in through the back door but it's something we should all embrace, something we can learn from.
"I played in the Europa for a couple of seasons with Bolton and really enjoyed my time. There's a few lads who are going to making their debuts in European football. It's something for them to strive for and in years to come, for West Ham to be aiming for."
And even though he won't be involved tonight, having remained at the club's Irish training camp with several fellow first team squad members, Nolan believes Terry Westley's pre-announced team should have enough in the tank to see off the challenge of FC Lusitanos.
"I wish them all the best," he said. "I'm sure the boys can get the job done for us."
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Nolan eyeing Bolton return [29th Jun 2015]
Payet, Gold, Sakho & Tomkins: Thursday's news [25th Jun 2015]
Bilic, Carroll, Sullivan & Nolan: Saturday's news [13th Jun 2015]
What next for Kevin Nolan? [12th Jun 2015]
Sheringham, Bilic, Lomas & Nolan: Tuesday's news [9th Jun 2015]
Aaron Cresswell named KUMB Readers' Player of the Year [28th May 2015]
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