West Ham v Manchester City: Sam Allardyce plays for pride in Capital One Cup, but really wants new players

'The amount of deals we have tried to secure... everyone’s frustrated'

The prospect of not reaching the Capital One Cup final, of yet another home defeat, or even of a mauling from Manchester City tonight are not Sam Allardyce’s main worries at the moment.

After slipping back into the bottom three following Saturday’s defeat against Newcastle, the West Ham United manager admitted yesterday that his team were “highly, highly unlikely” to overturn their 6-0 first-leg deficit and book their place at Wembley on 2 March.

Allardyce’s ambitions for the evening are more realistic. “It is about playing a game at home and trying to win it,” he said. “You play it because you are playing at home, for pride, to try to get a result. Hopefully we can give City a really tough game and try to get something out of it.”

But the importance of this week to West Ham’s season, even to their future, goes far beyond tonight’s events at Upton Park. They are separated from the bottom of the Premier League table by goal difference alone and in desperate need of reinforcements. The transfer window is where West Ham’s 2014 will be decided.

“Frustrated is an understatement,” said Allardyce yesterday, describing how he has found it so far. “The amount of offers and deals that we have tried to secure in the last six to eight weeks... everyone is frustrated, but our need is greater than everyone else’s.”

Allardyce has been trying to convince Ravel Morrison to sign a new contact, with not much success, and admitted that the 20-year-old midfielder – one of his best players this season – wanted to join Fulham.

“This window creates a hysteria about the fact that people will tell you that somebody is going to come and get you. That could then turn your head, probably based on the money that people say you’re going to make,” said Allardyce, who described Fulham’s opening offer as “derisory”.

West Ham were close to signing Everton defender Johnny Heitinga but that fell through, and now Everton are about to take Ivory Coast striker Lacina Traoré on loan from Monaco after West Ham secured a work permit for him.

“It was all down to the player’s agent,” Allardyce explained. “That is who he listened to. That is what happens in today’s game.” Traoré is not certain to pass his Everton medical – he has a hamstring problem – and if he does not, Allardyce would not rule out the possibility of trying again.

While West Ham are in a different situation from Manchester United, it is just as high pressure, according to Allardyce:  “From my point of view it is an equal pressure, not only because of now but because of the future of this club. The burden of this club is that it wants to move into the Olympic Stadium in two years’ time, so it has to be in the Premier League.”

 

Voices
Mosul dam was retaken with the help of the US
voicesRobert Fisk: Barack Obama is following the jihadists’ script
Arts and Entertainment
Loaded weapon: drugs have surprise side effects for Scarlett Johansson in Luc Besson’s ‘Lucy’
filmReview: Lucy, Luc Besson's complex thriller
News
peoplePamela Anderson rejects ice bucket challenge because of ALS experiments on animals
Arts and Entertainment
tvExecutive says content is not 'without any purpose'
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
techCould new invention save millions in healthcare bills?
News
A cleaner prepares the red carpet for the opening night during the 59th International Cannes Film Festival May 17, 2006 in Cannes, France.
newsPowerful vacuum cleaners to be banned under EU regulations
Sport
sportLeague Managers' Association had described Malky Mackay texts as 'friendly banter'
News
A polar bear’s diet is rich in seal blubber and half of its own body weight is composed of fat
i100
News
peopleCareer spanned 70 years, including work with Holocaust survivors
News
people
Travel
Flocking round: Beyoncé, Madame Tussauds' latest waxwork, looking fierce in the park
travelIn a digital age when we have more access than ever to the stars, why are waxworks still pulling in crowds?
News
London is the most expensive city in Europe for cultural activities such as ballet
arts
Arts and Entertainment
Jeremy Clarkson has rejected criticisms of his language, according to BBC director of television Danny Cohen
tv
Extras
indybest
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

The President came the nearest he has come yet to rivalling George W Bush’s gormless reaction to 9/11 , says Robert Fisk
Ebola outbreak: Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on the virus

Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on Ebola

A Christian charity’s efforts to save missionaries trapped in Africa by the crisis have been justifiably praised. But doubts remain about its evangelical motives
Jeremy Clarkson 'does not see a problem' with his racist language on Top Gear, says BBC

Not even Jeremy Clarkson is bigger than the BBC, says TV boss

Corporation’s head of television confirms ‘Top Gear’ host was warned about racist language
Nick Clegg the movie: Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise

Nick Clegg the movie

Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise
Philip Larkin: Misogynist, racist, miserable? Or caring, playful man who lived for others?

Philip Larkin: What will survive of him?

Larkin's reputation has taken a knocking. But a new book by James Booth argues that the poet was affectionate, witty, entertaining and kind, as hitherto unseen letters, sketches and 'selfies' reveal
Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?

Waxing lyrical

Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?
Texas forensic astronomer finally pinpoints the exact birth of impressionism

Revealed (to the minute)

The precise time when impressionism was born
From slow-roasted to sugar-cured: how to make the most of the British tomato season

Make the most of British tomatoes

The British crop is at its tastiest and most abundant. Sudi Pigott shares her favourite recipes
10 best men's skincare products

Face it: 10 best men's skincare products

Oscar Quine cleanses, tones and moisturises to find skin-savers blokes will be proud to display on the bathroom shelf
Malky Mackay allegations: Malky Mackay, Iain Moody and another grim day for English football

Mackay, Moody and another grim day for English football

The latest shocking claims do nothing to dispel the image that some in the game on these shores exist in a time warp, laments Sam Wallace
La Liga analysis: Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Pete Jenson starts his preview of the Spanish season, which begins on Saturday, by explaining how Fifa’s transfer ban will affect the Catalans
Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape