Pardew - the heat is on
ALAN Pardew expects Ipswich to crumble in front of 35,000 'hostile' Hammers fans at the play-off second leg tomorrow, writes Derek Davis.The West Ham boss praised the Blues supporters for the atmosphere they created at Portman Road but warned the reception would be even hotter at Upton Park.
ALAN Pardew expects Ipswich to crumble in front of 35,000 'hostile' Hammers fans at the play-off second leg tomorrow, writes Derek Davis.
The West Ham boss praised the Blues supporters for the atmosphere they created at Portman Road but warned the reception would be even hotter at Upton Park.
After seeing his side go a goal behind he is hoping the fear factor will be enough to intimidate Town and help his side go on to victory.
Pardew said: "We came into a fantastic environment which the Ipswich fans created and it was a tough game for us.
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"If you thought that was a good atmosphere then on Tuesday our place will be jumping.
"Our fans will be absolutely essential. I know what the place will be like and it promises to be a cracking game.
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"It is crucial for us to win now and we will be going all out to do that.
"It will be a different type of game and we will see what happens.
"Ipswich looked content at 1-0 and we were trying to get the equaliser. On Tuesday it has to be over and there will be a lot more urgency to the game, especially late on and that could be crucial.
"If we set it up right that period will be the time we want to exploit.
"With a one-goal lead they will be defending and that bodes well for us."
The Hammers went in to the game unbeaten after four games, while Town had not won in three, but league form went out of the window and Pardew's men struggled to cope with Town's tempo.
He said: "We didn't play as well as we could and you have to make them favourites.
"We could have played better offensively as a collective unit.
"We made poor decisions at times with the selection of passes.We had two great chances in the first half to take the lead and did not do that."
While West Ham had never played in a play-off game before, Pardew has tasted the knock-out phase and was the losing Reading manager last season when they went out at Wolves in the semi-finals.
He said: "I'm under no illusions at all, I was at Reading last season and we got beat by Wolves by the odd goal and ended up getting knocked out. So I'm not sitting pretty, and will make them favourites, but we will see how they cope with a hostile and jumping stadium."
The Hammers are expected to make changes in defence for tomorrow night's game with Thomas Repka being dropped, Hayden Mullins moving back to right back and Rufus Brevett going in at left back.