Sam Allardyce is convinced new recruit Marouane Chamakh has a big part to play in the second half of West Ham's Barclays Premier League campaign.

The Morocco international, who fired Bordeaux to the French Ligue 1 title in 2009, is intent on rediscovering his scoring touch at the Boleyn Ground after signing on loan from Arsenal until the end of the season.

The 28-year-old could yet make his debut at Sunderland on Saturday and Big Sam plans to give him every opportunity to make an impression in a claret and blue shirt. 

"He'll bring another goalscoring threat to the team," said the manager. "Obviously he has been very disappointed with his lack of involvement at Arsenal, certainly over the last year, maybe even longer.

"He's itching and hungry to get back and show what he can do. So, we'll give him the platform and hopefully he grabs the chance with both hands and reproduces his Bordeaux performances.

"He's exceptionally good in the air and he's really good at getting between defenders from crosses and that's what we can provide him. We can provide the materials and the ammunition for him to hopefully get a few goals.

"I think he's got a big chance to prove what he can do in the Premier League with us. He has to grasp that opportunity and show everybody that he's capable of playing on a regular basis in the Premier League."

Chamakh's arrival also means competition for the lone striker berth is hotting up, with Liverpool loanee Andy Carroll edging ever closer to a return to action and Carlton Cole in good form. It's a welcome headache for Big Sam, who is hopeful the battle for places will bring the best from his frontmen, particularly away from the Boleyn Ground where goals have been in short supply.

"All three of them are in a challenge for places and a challenge to play your best and keep the shirt. If you don't play your best you lose the shirt, and the three of them will get the chance to play and the one who plays the best will stay in for me.

"Our problem away from home is clear. The performances have been good before, but our lack of goalscoring power is the big worry.

"We haven't scored enough, simple as that, and that means we haven't gathered enough points. Because of that we're struggling with our away results. We've got to put that right, starting at Sunderland."

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