Cole: West Ham can push on
West Ham forward Carlton Cole thinks his side can finish in the top half of the table after a run of just one defeat in six games catapulted them out of the relegation zone.
Cole's 11 goals this season have helped his side in their fight against the drop, after the Hammers' early season form looked like it would make them certainties to join the Championship next season, and the striker claims the turnaround is all down to team spirit.
"Some of the performances this season have been unacceptable," Cole told talkSPORT. "But the players have got together, shown great team commitment and we're brushing it under the carpet.
"We all know what we can do, we're all professional players and we've been in the game for quite a while. Sometimes the manager doesn't need to say anything, we know. We've come into the changing room and we've lost a game and we know what's needed of us.''
Indeed Cole, 27, claims his side can take the recent results and push on to achieve a top-half finish.
"It's now time to work hard, look to the positives and get ourselves out of the mess that we're in,'' he said. ''We're still on the road to where we want to be, that was the top half of the table and hopefully we can still get there because it's a funny old Premier League season. We can really push on with the form we're in at the moment."
Meanwhile, West Ham manager Avram Grant also praised the fighting spirit shown by his players.
''When we were bottom of the league, we were fighting and fighting. We always wanted to find a solution and the spirit was very good,'' Grant said. ''Of course no one was happy when we lost. But from every bad situation we became stronger and stronger. That is the reason why we now have good momentum. You cannot push a button and be good. You need to do the right things even when things are going wrong.''
Grant believes it is the attitude of the squad during the bad times that galvanises a team.
''The real character comes when you are not in the good days,'' he said. ''I know what I want from this team and I know what I want West Ham to be in the next few years.''