West Ham United Playing for Champions League

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With the early season success of Southampton, most Premier League fans did not notice that there were two potential underdog stories. While Southampton’s run up the table was spectacular, the odds of the club sustaining its success were slim. However, there is another club which has the potential to make a strong run late into the campaign.

West Ham United are currently setting the Premier League alight. With three straight wins and only a single loss in their last nine matches, the Hammers currently sit fourth in the standings. The club’s best Premier League finish on record was third, back in 1986. In the last ten years, they have finished no higher than ninth, they have even had two spells in the Second division Championship.

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With a plethora of talent at his disposal, manager Sam Allardyce has been able to mastermind his squad’s meteoric climb up the table this season.

Thanks to the likes of Andy Carroll, on-loan star Alex Song and captain Kevin Nolan, the Irons have given themselves a real shot at finishing top four this season. With a squad as in sync as the one currently playing, any club will find winning against this side a difficult task.

Having only lost two matches since match-day four, West Ham look set to finish the season’s first half in contention for a top four finish. Wins over both Manchester City and Liverpool have highlighted the squads strength and ability to win big games.

Their next two matches against relatively weaker squads in Sunderland and Leicester City should provide the club with a major opportunity to boost their chances of remaining top four.

However, some major questions about the Hammers still need answering. The depth of the squad has not really been tested. As one of the only clubs in the Premier League to not have sustained a major loss due to injury, should the club finally feel the injury bug at some point, there is no telling how they will respond.

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Another major question lies with consistency. Despite the results, West Ham have had problems stringing together strong performances. Dominating wins such as those against Liverpool and Crystal Palace have all been followed up by sub-par performances the following match. The problem has shown even more in the defense, allowing sides to attack and apply pressure to the point of fracture cannot occur against the top clubs.

However, with all of that being said, West Ham United have the best shot of any of the other clubs, to upset the status quo and finish top four. With the struggles of both Liverpool and Arsenal this campaign, it’s open season on the last Champions League spot.

With Chelsea leading the way for London based clubs, West Ham seemed determined to contend with them, as well as Arsenal and Tottenham.

The club’s move to Olympic Stadium in 2016 may be two years away, but the Hammer’s are determined to move with a splash, and become one of the top clubs in all of English Soccer, if not the world.

Qualifying for the Champion’s League for the first time ever would allow the club to do so. It would also let the rest of the Premier League know that The Hammers are here, and here to stay.