Chances galore make Green hopeful

IT MAY have been a disappointing performance from the Hammers on Saturday, but goalkeeper Rob Green is determined to take the positives out of the display. West Ham never found their rhythm and Middlesbrough embarrassed them on the break on quite a few oc

IT MAY have been a disappointing performance from the Hammers on Saturday, but goalkeeper Rob Green is determined to take the positives out of the display.

West Ham never found their rhythm and Middlesbrough embarrassed them on the break on quite a few occasions, but Green was quick to point out that there were plus points from the match.

"We didn't play well so we're happy to get a replay," admitted the England goalkeeper.

"Chances-wise though, we still had more than enough to win the game. It's a learning curve and we know that if we're not 100 per cent playing well, then it's going to be difficult for us."


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Green himself had his shaky moments in the first half on Saturday, kicking one ball straight into touch as he tried to find Herita Ilunga in the left back position.

But he bounced back after the break to make three important saves for the Hammers and keep them firmly in the tie.

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It was the other end that Green was keen to emphasise.

"Today we had enough chances to win three games even though we didn't play amazingly well, so you can take confidence from that," he insisted.

"You're never going to play your greatest football every day and I think people understand that."

Last season's Hammer of the Year has had one or two tricky moments this season, not least his display against Saturday's opponents Bolton Wanderers when he gifted them two goals.

But mostly he has shown once again that he is one of the best goalkeepers in the Premier League and he was rewarded with 45 minutes for England in Spain last Wednesday.

"It's always nice to play for your country," said Green. "It is four years since my last game and it's nice to be involved and you get confidence by going out and playing.

"It was great for someone like 'Coley' to get a taste of it as well."

Green has now made 97 appearances in claret and blue since his �2million signing from Norwich City in the summer of 2006.

That meant he missed out on West Ham's run to the FA Cup Final earlier that year, though he is convinced that this particular run in the competition is not over yet.

"We can't go away from Satur-day's game saying all is lost," insisted the keeper. "We're still in the cup despite not having played amazingly well, but at the same time we've had more than our fair share of chances to win.

"People aren't going to be on top form every day, but you need someone to step up and today Herita did that for us."

Ilunga scored the goal, but Green certainly played his part too.

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