West Ham will fall just short of top-four finish, says Arsenal legend

Nigel Winterburn expects a competitive clash between West Ham and Man United

By Jens Raitanen
Former Hammer Nigel Winterburn Photo: Chillisauce

Nigel Winterburn believes West Ham United will fall just short of a top-four finish despite an excellent season so far.

Sam Allardyce’s side are currently eighth in the Premier League table and just six points off the final Champions League qualifying spot.

They may just come up a bit short in the end

Nigel Winterburn

The Hammers had a fantastic first half to their season as they sat comfortably in the top four for long periods before dropping a significant number of points after the New Year.

“I don’t think they will (finish in the top four) but with the position they are in at the moment, they are not far off in terms of points,” Winterburn told The Sport Review.

“They should believe that they have an opportunity to do that. If they can keep the consistency going then they may surprise one or two teams.

“I think they may just come up a bit short in the end but they should strive to do it because, as I said, there is an opportunity for them.”

West Ham have won just once in their last six league matches despite putting in a number of convincing performances against the likes of West Brom and Swansea.

The Hammer also endured a frustrating transfer window after they failed to sign their top targets before the end of deadline day.

Allardyce was due to sign Darren Fletcher from Manchester United before the deal broke down, with Louis van Gaal claiming the Hammers only wanted the Scot on loan instead of signing him permanently.

Emmanuel Adebayor was also expected to join the east London club but Spurs chairman Daniel Levy refused to allow the striker to sign for a rival.

West Ham host the Red Devils on Sunday as they hope to close the gap on the top four, and Winterburn says he expects a tough encounter between the two sides.

“I think it will be very competitive,” he said.

“West Ham have been so strong this season. It wouldn’t surprise me if it was a scoring draw.”

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