West Ham United have strengthened their defensive resources ahead of the npower Championship run-in by snapping up Stoke City defender Danny Collins on loan until the end of the season.

Wales international Collins, who is capable of playing at centre-back or full-back, joins until 21 May and went into Sam Allardyce's squad for Saturday's npower Championship visit of Doncaster Rovers.

The 31-year-old will provide competition and cover for James Tomkins, Abdoulaye Faye and Winston Reid, with the latter currently sidelined with a head injury suffered on international duty with New Zealand.

Speaking exclusively to West Ham TV, Collins said he is fit, ready and eager to play this weekend, if selected by Big Sam.

"West Ham are going well in the league and looking for promotion," said the new No25. "They are having a good season so this was a chance for me to come out on loan and get some games in.

"I went out on loan to Ipswich earlier this season and played 16 games there and I've played a few games for Stoke, but I want to be playing week-in, week-out if I can. Hopefully I can come down here, get myself into the team and be part of it.

"I keep myself ready on and off the pitch and have been training hard to keep myself ticking over. I played a couple of games for Stoke over the last couple of weeks. I got the call on Thursday night so I've come down to try to play some games.

"Games come thick and fast in the Championship - either Saturday/Tuesday or Saturday/Wednesday - so you need a big squad. I'm ready if needed.

"I've won the Championship twice, the first in 2005 and then in 2007, so it would be nice to complete a hat-trick. It'll be a battle but with the position West Ham are in, the finishing line is there and hopefully we can achieve promotion over the next 12 games."

Danny Collins

Having begun his career with non-league Chester City, Collins helped his hometown club win the Conference National title in 2003/04 before joining Sunderland for a bargain £140,000 in 2004. Collins won promotion from the Championship with Sunderland in 2004/05, when he was a regular team-mate of Hammers left-back George McCartney, and again playing under manager Roy Keane in 2006/07.

After winning Player of the Year honours at Sunderland in 2008 and 2009, the experienced player joined Stoke City for a reported £2.75m in the summer of 2009.

At the Britannia Stadium, Collins filled the left-back berth and played alongside West Ham centre-back Abdoulaye Faye on many occasions. Alongside Faye, he helped Stoke to reach last season's FA Cup final, where both watched from the substitutes' bench as the Potters were beaten 1-0 by Manchester City at Wembley.

Faye is just one of a host of familiar faces Collins has been reunited with in east London.

"I know Abby from Stoke and I've known George for a few years, John Carew came to Stoke last year for a while and I know Jack Collison from Wales, so knowing some of the boys always helps you to bed-in when you come to a new club."

Collins joined Ipswich Town on loan in September 2011, making 16 appearances and scoring three goals. He was part of the Tractor Boys side that beat West Ham 1-0 at the Boleyn Ground on 27 September.

At international level, he has been capped 12 times since making his debut in a 2-0 win over Hungary in September 2005. Last year, he was part of the Wales side beaten 2-0 by England in a EURO 2012 qualifier in Cardiff.

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