Mark Noble expected to miss the remainder of the season when he underwent shoulder surgery last month, but recovered quickly to make a comeback in Wednesday's 2-2 draw with Manchester United.

The Canning Town-born midfielder entered the fray in the second half to replace Gary O'Neil from the bench and he was thrilled to play his part.

Now, with Wigan Athletic visiting the Boleyn Ground on Saturday, Noble is hoping the Hammers can extend their unbeaten run to a fifth game.

He told West Ham TV: "To be honest, after the news I got about my arm I sort of wrote this season off because they said they may have had to take my rib out, which was worrying.

"When the surgeon went inside he managed to clean all of the scar tissue around the nerve and I managed to get back a lot quicker, so I am over the moon.

"It was brilliant to play against Manchester United. I've only trained for the last couple of days so it was nice to get back involved and get some game time under my belt again. As I said, I had written it off so it's lovely to be back and involved with the lads for the last push of the season.

"We were disappointed to draw on Wednesday, especially because Robin van Persie's goal was offside at the end and you've worked so hard for a result, then one decision can change the state of a game.

"Then again, we would have taken a point against Manchester United all day. I am sure if anyone had asked the manager he would say the same. United needed to win and again against Aston Villa to take the title so our result puts that on the back burner a little bit. But United are up there because they keep going and they've got the quality and they get that little bit of extra strength like they did at the end there.

"To play the four games that we have against United this year and play the way we have, it's a credit to the lads and how far we've come in the last two years."

Noble joined the many praising teammates Ricardo Vaz Te and Mohamed Diame this week for their contribution in the 2-2 draw.

He added: "It was lovely from Vaz, it was a great turn and finish. We know Mo has got that in his locker. I thought Nobby had done well to get out of the way, he must have breathed in a little bit and it went straight in the bottom corner. It looked like we were going to hold on but we never. It puts us on 39 points and with four or five games to go it's a good tally to have."

As the countdown to the end of the season begins, Noble still has his sights set on a top-half finish.

He explained: "If we can get seven points from the last six games then that would be a great outcome for us and would set us up for the start of next season. We'll obviously go away and have a break and start next season like we did this.

"The lads are buzzing and looking forward to another home game on Saturday.

"I only trained two or three days this week and came off the bench to play 25 minutes against United. The way the lads are playing at the minute it will be tough to play some part on Saturday. I really did think my season was over so it would be nice to be out there."

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