West Ham United manager Slaven Bilic was readying himself for a replay against Championship outfit Wolverhampton Wanderers which looked like ending in stalemate on Saturday (January 9).
Only a crisp left footed strike in the 85th minute from striker Nikica Jelavic put the east Londoners in the hat for the fourth round draw, which will take place on Monday (January 11).
The manager said it is more a relief than a celebration that his side had managed to squeeze past Kenny Jackett’s solid Wolves side.
Read more: I'd sacrifice top four finish for FA Cup win
Bilic said: “I was hoping we wouldn’t get the replay. In the first 15 minutes Wolves were quicker than us. We took control and were OK even though our delivery of the final ball was not the best. The first 10 minutes of the second half Wolves started to keep the ball but after that it was all us.
“We were ready for the replay because I didn’t know we were going to score in the last moments. The players did everything to score and putting Andy Carroll on changed the game.
“If there was one team looking to try to win the game in the end it was us. We got the reward for that. We scored a great goal and I have no complaints as it was well deserved.”
After a dreadful and dull first 45 minutes, Bilic introduced Carroll and star player Dimitri Payet who both made the difference in the attacking third. The manager had been forced to scotch rumours that Carroll was on his way out the club, possibly to a north east outfit.
Read more: Match report – West Ham 1, Wolves 0
He said of Carroll: “He’s in good form and I told him he has to stay fit and look after himself. He looks really fit now and he look capable of doing many things on the pitch. The things like holding the ball up, chasing down defenders and controlling the ball is good and its down to fitness. He just has to maintain it.”
West Ham make a swift return to action and return to domestic duties as they travel to AFC Bournemouth on Tuesday night (January 10) before going on the road again the following weekend to take on Newcastle United.
Follow The Wharf on Twitter @the_wharf .
Keep up to date with all our articles on Facebook .