Slaven Bilic was relieved to end a run of draws with a 2-1 come-from-behind victory over Southampton as West Ham climbed to seventh in the Premier League at Upton Park.
The home side had drawn their previous five top-flight matches and fell behind to Carl Jenkinson’s 13th-minute own goal, before Michail Antonio opened his account for the club in fortuitous circumstances and Andy Carroll headed in a late winner.
Bilic, whose side had not won since beating Chelsea on October 24, pointed to the fact that they can now boast a long unbeaten streak, rather than simply being labelled draw specialists.
“It was a massive win. Now we can say we are six games unbeaten,” he told West Ham TV. “We showed great character and we deserved to win the game in the end.”
Antonio’s equaliser came when Victor Wanyama’s attempted clearance struck the former Nottingham Forest forward and looped over Maarten Stekelenburg, while the forward also had a hand in Caroll’s winner, having seen his initial header hit the crossbar.
Bilic added of Antonio’s display: “I’m pleased with how Michail has performed and he needs good service as then he can show his pace.
“He was crucial in crucial moments and he deserves everything.”