West Ham United manager Slaven Bilic says his players are positive about getting a result against Swansea City on Sunday (December 20) despite failing to pick up a win in their last three games.
Three consecutive draws against West Bromwich Albion, Manchester United and most recently Stoke City means although the Hammers are unbeaten in three league games, failing to pick up maximum points since the October 24 at home. The slump came at the same time as a roster of key players picked up injuries.
Bilic said he expected the team to compete against Swansea City. He said: “We’re positive. I said to the players after the Manchester United and Stoke games that you coped without some key players really well. The togetherness, bonding and the character we showed was positive. That’s why I’m really confident for Sunday’s game against Swansea but we need to keep that team spirit especially when players start to come back.
“We have to go through the next three games without key players like we’ve done so far.”
The Swans are currently going through their worst run in the Premier League. The club sacked manager Garry Monk and are without a win in their last six home games.
However, Bilic knows that the Welsh club could turn the corner at any moment especially after a strong performance against Manchester City.
“I watched Swansea’s last four or five games and they didn’t play to their best – especially at home,” said the 47-year-old.
“But in some of the games they were unlucky and showed really good quality up front but were open at the back. In their last game against Manchester City they played really well and didn’t deserve to be beaten – they deserved to win that game.
“We need to be as compact and as good as them on the day. We have to be patient at the back and concentrate on stopping them. When we go to the last third we need to capitalise. Most of our shots against Stoke were off target so we need to show a bit more quality in front of goal.”
Despite good news that on loan midfielder Manuel Lanzini should return to action next week and star man Dimitri Payet expected to start training in 10 days, the Upton Park outfit will travel to the Liberty Stadium without striker Andy Carroll who has a groin injury, meaning Nikica Jelavic could earn his first start since joining from Hull City in the summer for £3million.