West Ham defender: ‘We can bounce back against Manchester United’
09:00 27 November 2012
PA Wire/Press Association Images
Hammers centre half James Tomkins is desperate for the team to show their true form when they travel to Old Trafford to take on Manchester United
West Ham defender James Tomkins believes that can still go into tonight’s (Wednesday’s) showdown with Manchester United at Old Trafford with confidence, despite a dismal showing against Tottenham on Sunday.
The 23-year-old centre half battled gamely, but the onslaught from the likes of Gareth Bale, Aaron Lennon and in particular Jermain Defoe, proved too much in the 3-1 defeat at White Hart Lane.
But he is determined that the team bounce back tonight.
“We are where we are in the league for a reason,” insisted Tomkins after the game on Sunday. “We have played some good stuff this season.
It wasn’t to be against Spurs in terms of performance, but we have to put it behind us quickly so we can go to Manchester United 100 per cent mentally and physically.”
The pace and movement of Tottenham on Sunday proved to be their undoing and West Ham are likely to face something very similar at Old Trafford tonight, but Tomkins believes that they do have the game to thwart that sort of play.
“They have got a lot of pace with their wingers, but we can still go there with a lot of confidence,” insisted Tomkins.
“We will sit down with the gaffer and see what he says about how to deal with them.
“Against Manchester City at times, we were sitting back and letting them play in front of us and that day we were hard to break down. It might be a case of doing that again at times in the game, but we will just have to see.”
West Ham have made an excellent start to the season, chalking up 19 points already, but that counted for nothing against Spurs, who overran the Hammers at times and could easily have won more convincingly.
“We didn’t start the greatest and we should have kept the ball better than we did, especially in the first half,” admitted Tomkins.
“Going into the break 1-0 down, was a bit of a blow really because we had defended quite resolutely. In the second half we didn’t improve much either, so we were beaten by the better team, sad to say, but we were.”
This is a tough run of fixtures for West Ham with Manchester United tonight, followed by Chelsea at Upton Park on Saturday and then Liverpool at home the following week.
And the defender knows that they cannot afford to dwell on the result at White Hart Lane.
“We didn’t play to our best against Spurs, but we need to put it behind us quite quickly because we have another hard game against United and they come thick and fast and tougher as well.
“But we have to go to Old Trafford full of confidence because we have got the points on the board and we can only get better after the Tottenham game.”