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2013-04-09T11:00:00 Updated 2015-02-19T00:58:08

Collison praises defensive effort

West Ham United were just a whisker away from grabbing their first win at Liverpool in nearly 50 years on Sunday.

After defending stoically and restricting the influence of the Reds' key man Luis Suarez, the Hammers won an 85th minute corner which Jack Collison met with a header that beat home keeper Pepe Reina.

However, Lucas was stationed by the post to block on the line and extend the Londoners' long wait for victory at Anfield, although they were happy to gain a valuable point from the 0-0 draw.

Midfielder Collison, who entered the fray as a 63rd minute substitute, was full of praise for the Hammers' defensive effort.

"The boys battled magnificently on Sunday, right from Jussi all the way to Coley," he said. "They worked hard and it would have been nice if my header had gone in, but at the end of the day a point's a great result here.

"I'm not normally in the box attacking corners, but I found myself in there for that one. I caught it nicely and beat the keeper, but Lucas on the line cleared it. It wasn't to be.

"We definitely deserved the point. The boys at the back were brilliant all day, James Tomkins came in and was magnificent. He made a great block on the line and was excellent throughout.

"We knew they were a good team with good players. Attacking is one of their strong points, but we nullified them well today, worked hard and created a couple of chances as well. It was the perfect gameplan you could say from us, so well done to the gaffer."

The point was the twelfth gained by the Hammers on their travels this season and Collison believes their solid display sets them up nicely for a strong finish to the campaign.

He continued: "It's a massive boost with seven games to go. We want to go on a little run now and try to stay unbeaten from now until the end of the season. If we can't do that, we want to get as many points as we can. We want a strong finish to really send out a statement to everyone, prove that we're here and that we're going to be a force to be reckoned with.

"A top-half finish is very possible. If we concentrate on ourselves, take each game as it comes and get some more points on the board then we can do it. That's what we're aiming for as a team - we're not looking behind us, we're looking to push on rather than stay still."

Next up for Sam Allardyce's men is a trip to Southampton, who pipped the Hammers to the second automatic promotion spot from the Championship last season.

Collison was key to West Ham making it up through the play-offs and now he wants to get one over the Saints at St Mary's.

He added: "They've got a new manager who has come in recently and they're on a good run at the moment. They're playing well, but we feel as a team and as a club that we've got a little point to prove there.

"Maybe there's going to be a little more on the game than people may think because we were disappointed not to go up automatically last year. A lot of the boys are still here and that still stays with them. We're going to go there and look to get the three points."

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