West Ham midfielder Mark Noble hopes impressive recent momentum can be built upon when they travel to face AFC Bournemouth in the Premier League on Tuesday.
A 1-0 home win over Championship outfit Wolves in the FA Cup on Saturday extended the unbeaten run of Slaven Bilic’s team to eight matches in all competitions.
West Ham are sixth in the Premier League after 20 games and only four points behind Tottenham in fourth, with Noble desperate to keep the pressure on the sides around them by recording a fourth straight win in all competitions as they face a Bournemouth side who beat them 4-3 at Upton Park in August.
“We have played a lot of football in the last couple of weeks, a lot of hard games – Southampton, Liverpool, well-earned wins,” the club captain told West Ham’s official website.
“Wolves was a possible banana skin for us at home, but we have come through it with a clean sheet and a victory.
“We want to keep on putting three points on the board, keep that feeling of winning games. We have won three in a row and the [five consecutive] draws before that have given us the platform to go on and do that.”
Bournemouth also enjoyed FA Cup success against Championship opposition, beating Birmingham City 2-1 despite making changing their entire line-up.
Manager Eddie Howe, who has confirmed a deal is close to sign Wolves striker Benik Afobe as the club still wait on a work permit for Juan Iturbe, is pleased to have his first-choice players fresh to face West Ham.
“The selection was down to us having a Premier League game in two days’ time,” Howe told the club’s website.
“So we wanted to protect the majority of our squad if we could while still playing a team to win the game. It is a delicate balance, by no means did we pick a team to do anything other than to try and win. It was wise to make the changes we did.”
Bournemouth have only lost one of their last eight Premier League matches to sit four points clear of the bottom three in 16th place.
None of Howe’s long-term absentees are fit to return, but they will check on the fitness of Josh King (hamstring). Manuel Lanzini (groin), Victor Moses (hamstring) and Diafra Sakho (thigh) are all still out for the visitors.
Key Opta stats:
– Bournemouth’s 4-3 win over West Ham in August is their only competitive victory in six attempts versus the Hammers (D2 L3).
– Injured Bournemouth striker Callum Wilson scored three goals in their win over West Ham in August – no other player has surpassed three goals for the club in the season overall to date.
– The Hammers are winless in their last five Premier League away games (L2 D3) and have netted just twice in this run.
– Dimitri Payet has created 49 goalscoring chances in the Premier League this season and despite missing seven games through injury this is still 23 more than any other West Ham player in 2015-16.
– Andy Carroll has scored in his last two Premier League appearances for West Ham – he’s never scored in three successive apps in the competition.
– 51% of Carroll’s Premier League goals have been headers – only two strikers to have scored 20+ goals in the competition have scored a higher proportion with their heads (Kenwyne Jones, 55% and Duncan Ferguson, 53%).
– Cherries’ midfielder Andrew Surman has completed the most passes in the Premier League this season (1107).