In the final game of a long season, West Ham manager Sam Allardyce has the opportunity to send his old employers Newcastle United back into the Championship.
Allardyce had a torrid time at St James Park between 2007-08 but he has the chance to have the final word – while also helping out his good friend Steve Bruce at Hull City.
However, his main goal is a final stab at the 50 point mark which has eluded him for weeks.
Reflecting on his time on Tyneside, Allardyce said: “It’s been a long time since we parted company. Since Newcastle I’ve had a fantastic time at Blackburn Rovers and West Ham United since then which is nearly seven years.”
After a tremendous start to the campaign – where the Hammers sat in fourth position at Christmas – 2015 has seen them plummet to mid-table obscurity.
Allardyce said he could understand the fans’ frustrations.
“We’re all disappointed – none so than the players and myself,” said the 60-year old. “We could have had such a great season in terms of the points tally and have the best season West Ham have had. If we hadn’t conceded all of those late goals then we would be looking at the 58-60 point mark.”
“It’s taught us a lesson. The lack of goals in the second half of the season highlights that we haven’t matched the performances with results.”
Speculation surrounding Allardyce’s future has been intense with rumours that he will go just hours after the final whistle on Sunday.
Allardyce said that his agent as well as the owners and managing director Karen Brady will sit down on Monday to discuss the situation although the man himself will not be there – he is spending time in Spain with his grandchildren.
The former Bolton Wanderers boss also confirmed he would be moving out of his Canary Wharf apartment in the near future as the apartment was sold two months ago.
With preparations ahead of next season underway finding a new attacking coach has now become a priority as Teddy Sheringham has left his post at the east Londoners to become manager of League Two outfit Stevenage.
Allardyce insisted that the former Tottenham Hotspur, Manchester United and England striker needed to leave in order to break into management.
Allardyce said: “It’s a great opportunity for Teddy. Getting involved in football at West Ham has probably given him that spark. Rather than the relaxed life he had previously to joining us he’s been stimulated by his time with West Ham.
“We’ve enjoyed having him and it’s created an opportunity for him to test his skills as a manager. Now all Teddy has to look forward to a lot of hard work and sleepless nights.”
Ahead of Sunday’s game West Ham will have a welcome boost as centre back James Tomkins returns to the squad earlier than expected from a shoulder injury. However fellow defender James Collins will miss the game with a calf strain.