Sam Allardyce knows West Ham United will have to be on their guard when Tottenham Hotspur visit the Boleyn Ground on Monday night.

Spurs are chasing a spot in the UEFA Champions League for next season and the Hammers boss believes Andre Villas-Boas' men possess the quality to achieve that.

But he also insists that West Ham are capable of putting a dent in their challenge if they produce the kind of performance they have delivered against the other top sides at home this season.

He said: "They've got some great players at Tottenham and they're really producing. They're good enough to finish third or fourth, I don't think there's any doubt about that, if they can continue to keep their top players fit.

"I was particularly impressed with them when we played there. Their frontline was outstanding on the day and they really punished us when they had the opportunity.

"We know we've got a big game on our hands on Monday, but we're a different team when we're at home. We enjoy playing against the big boys, we've got results against Manchester City and Chelsea. That brought the best out of our players and hopefully it'll do the same on Monday night."

One particularly pressing point will be trying to keep Gareth Bale quiet, with the Welshman having scored seven goals in his last six games.

Allardyce added: "You have to take the responsiblity that whatever position he floats into, the nearest man is the key. His attention to Gareth is the most important to nullify the space that he needs to work in.

"It's alright saying that he plays down the left hand side but he doesn't really. He comes inside and pops up in certain positions, so to say that it's only going to be your right back that marks Gareth Bale isn't the answer. Several players will have to mark him when he comes into their area.

"They're a very strong team in possession and we're going to have to be very good defensively to cope with that, then try to deliver the sort of performances we've done at home on a regular basis to cause them a few problems and score a few goals."

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