Hammers danger for Town

WEST Ham manager Alan Pardew believes he now has a squad capable of not only winning the league but doing so in style.The Blues are ahead of the Hammers on goal difference and the two sides meet head on in the Championship on Saturday.

By Derek Davis

WEST Ham manager Alan Pardew believes he now has a squad capable of not only winning the league but doing so in style.

The Blues are ahead of the Hammers on goal difference and the two sides meet head on in the Championship on Saturday.

Pardew has made sweeping changes to his side since they defeated Town in the play-offs last May and eight of the starting XI in their win over Rotherham on Tuesday were his acquisitions, including four made in recent weeks.


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The impressive Calum Davenport, on loan from Tottenham, and £300,000 signing Malky Mackay linked well in the centre of defence, with former England international Chris Powell making his debut at full-back and Wales' Carl Fletcher effective in the deep-lying midfield role.

Pardew said: “We have a squad I feel is good enough to win this league. There have been times when we have struggled to overcome teams with a negative type of game-plan. However, after the recent signings, I now feel we have a squad who can play their way out of this division.

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“Many times in the past teams have looked great on paper and then failed to achieve anything.

“It's all very well having players with reputations but there is another vital ingredient that all successful teams need - and that is spirit, a desire to fight back when things aren't going your way.”

Pardew believes Ipswich will go to Upton Park with rather more attacking intent, which could help West Ham, who would revel in the freedom to attack more naturally than trying to force an opening, as they had to do against the Millers.

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