March 9 2014 Latest news:
By Nick Wright
Friday, February 7, 2014
Manager Sam Allardyce says West Ham are in for a tough test at Aston Villa this weekend – regardless of whether striker Andy Carroll is available.
West Ham are today facing an FA tribunal to contest Carroll’s three-match ban following his controversial sending off in last weekend’s 2-0 win over Swansea.
The Hammers hope to learn the outcome of the hearing today, but Allardyce knows they can’t afford to lose focus ahead of Saturday’s trip to Villa Park.
The Villans are currently 10th in the Premier League table after struggling to a 15th-placed finish last year, and Allardyce believes they are improving under Paul Lambert.
“I think that Paul Lambert had a massive learning curve last season with the dramatic change-around of players that he made at Aston Villa, buying a lot of young players,” Allardyce said.
“I think that all those young players have grown in stature based upon the experiences that they had last season.
“They are using those experiences to put Aston Villa in a better light in terms of results. They have the danger men as we know.
“They’ve had some very good performances recently, I’m sure he was very disappointed only drawing 2-2 at Liverpool.
“They came back against West Bromwich Albion to win and they’re scoring goals at the moment.
“It’s a big game for us and they’re a big threat at the moment. They’re in good form and they’ve done very well.”