Tony Cottee believes that West Ham United have a “platform to push” towards the European places and silverware after their positive start to the season.
David Moyes’ side have started the season excellently, taking 10 points from their opening five games, with their only defeat coming to the champions Manchester City and they currently sit sixth in the Premier League table.
With the Hammers’ Europa League campaign getting underway on Thursday (21 September) when they face TSC Backa Topola at the London Stadium, Cottee believes the Irons now have the perfect chance to build on their success.
Speaking to The West Ham Way on Wednesday (20 September) he said: “Before the start of the season, I think it would be fair to say mid-table and a real push to do well in Europe again but I’ll be honest I think this side can achieve more.
“Now I think we want to see West Ham build on this start. I think the aim should be to win more silverware, Europa League has to be a priority and the club looking to finish in the European places in the Premier League this season.”
Following Michail Antonio’s suggestion that the Hammers will finish above Liverpool this season [Footballer’s Football, 18 September], it is clear that across the entirety of West Ham, past and present, a lot of confidence has been taken from the start of the season.
It’s not misplaced either, in their wins over Brighton and Chelsea, the Irons played some excellent football in all areas of the pitch and that was without Mohammed Kudus, the biggest signing of the summer, even having a proper run in the team yet.
The top seven placed may be a tough ask, after all, Moyes’ side only finished 14th in the league last year. But the confidence at the London Stadium will bleed into the European campaign, especially following last season’s Europa Conference League win.
Whether or not West Ham have what it takes to go all the way and win the competition is yet to be seen, especially considering the strength of some of the sides in the tournament this season, but their early season shows they’ll have to be taken seriously.
No matter what, Moyes and his side deserve plenty of credit for instilling this level of confidence into supporters so early in the campaign. However, neither the players nor the fans must get carried away as the new season is only six games old.