Thursday 29 August
Updated Thursday 19 February
Rat: 'We could have scored six'
Summer signing Razvan Rat hopes West Ham United's fortunes in front of goal will turn come Saturday, after the Hammers were denied a hatful against Cheltenham Town in the Capital One Cup on Tuesday.
As it was, Sam Allardyce's side were worthy 2-1 winners against the Sky Bet League Two Robins, but might have enjoyed an even more comfortable evening at the Boleyn Ground.
The Romanian international, making his competitive debut in claret and blue, insisted that the Club's safe passage to the third round was all important, with one eye on a weekend Barclays Premier League clash against Stoke City.
He told West Ham TV: "It's true that we had a lot of chances and we could have scored six, maybe. But maybe it was not our day. Hopefully all the chances will come on Saturday and the ball will go in on Saturday!
"It was interesting for me, my first official game. It's true that it was against, theoretically, a weaker opponent but as you saw it was not easy because, this kind of team, when they're playing against a Premier League team, they give all their best on the field. But it was good, we won, so that's the most important thing."
Though the Hammers' quality eventually told on Tuesday, the hosts were made to work hard for the victory and Rat, for one, was not the least bit surprised with the application of the lower-league visitors.
It took a stunning Ricardo Vaz Te free-kick to break the Robins' stubborn resistance, a goal that made life considerably easier for West Ham thereafter.
He continued: "They're the same football players like us, they're just playing in another league. So the difference between a Premier League player and a Second Division player is just mentally. It's about the mind. They are fit, they're running hard, so it's just your mentality that makes the difference.
"Vaz Te was amazing, he was amazing on that free-kick. But that goal released us and the game became much easier afterwards."
Looking further afield, Roland - as he's fast becoming known - is not ruling out a trip to Wembley, though attention now turns to Saturday's visit of the Potters.
"I think it's five games 'til Wembley, so we're looking further than the third round. I'll see you there," he joked!
"First of all, I hope to play [against Stoke, to make my Premier League debut. But this depends on the manager. I hope also to have a good game on Saturday and get another three points."