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2013-10-02T06:00:00 Updated 2015-02-18T23:52:27

The Big Interview - Kevin Nolan

West Ham United captain Kevin Nolan admits the Hammers are having a frustrating time at present.

A failure to take chances and a number of controversial refereeing decisions have left West Ham sitting just above the Barclays Premier League's bottom three.

However, skipper Nolan said the players and staff will not allow the situation to play on their minds and will be working even harder to turn the recent slide in results around - starting at Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday.

Nobby, Saturday's defeat at Hull City must have been frustrating, considering we dominated the game for long periods, had 60 per cent possession and unleashed 18 shots at goal?

KN: "Of course, because stats don't lie at the end of the day. They got given a penalty which wasn't and we didn't get given one which was [a penalty], but it was just one of those things. They got 1-0 up and defended fantastically.

"Hull are newly-promoted and they've got eleven points and they deserved it on Saturday because of the hard work and effort they put in, but we had more than enough chances to get back level and it's criminal by us that we're not putting them away at the moment."

What was your view of the incident where Jake Livermore appeared to handle the ball inside the Hull penalty area?

KN: "At the end of the day it was a blatant handball and everyone knows it was a handball, and that's the be-all and end-all. The referee has got to give it and, after what he has given earlier in the game, he's got to give that penalty.

"I thought they were very poor decisions for both penalties because if he gave us the penalty we would have got back to one-all and the game changes. Hull would have had to come out because they couldn't just sit in.

"We have pressed them all the way but it just wouldn't fall for us. You have those days, so this is a time when we've just got to stick together and we are doing that. No-one is pointing the finger."

You seem to be getting into good positions but not putting the ball in the net?

KN: "Definitely. As I said, we're creating chances and if we weren't creating chances we'd be really worried. It's just about them falling to us now. It's inches rather than anything else. If we just keep doing the right things, we know it's going to turn for us.

"In the last couple of weeks, refereeing decisions have hurt us and it's massive because it could have been another couple of points on the board. We've now got five points after six games and we're just above the relegation zone and it costs us massively.

"These lads have got to realise that - they are professional referees now and they've got to get everything right."

Presumably you cannot get your injured forward players back soon enough?

KN: "Of course. When your major signing cost £15million and he's not playing, it's going to affect you, but it's down to the lads to step up to the plate. Mo [Maiga] has had a few chances on Saturday and he probably could have done better with a couple, but it wasn't to be.

"At the end of the day, we've just got to keep fighting and creating the chances and one of them will go in. Mladen Petric is getting up to full-speed with us and we've got Carlton Cole who is going to join in with us soon in training.

"Hopefully we'll start creating more and better chances and converting them."

As captain, what do you say to the other players in the dressing room during a difficult period like this?

KN: "We can't afford to panic and, at the end of the day, we understand the position we're in. I've been in this type of position at this stage of the season before. At the minute, things are just not falling for us and refereeing decisions are absolutely killing us - little decisions they have to get right are going against us at the moment.

"Last week, Nobes won the ball, but he got sent-off and they (Everton) scored a goal and went on to beat us 3-2. If he'd stayed on we might have seen the game out and won 2-1 or got a draw but that's the way it is.

"I still cannot believe why Hull have got a penalty when I've seen it and I've seen the handball and it's as blatant as can be. It's very disappointing overall but we'll just keep plugging away and stick together. We've got a good camaraderie at this Club, throughout the players and staff and the fans, who I thought were fantastic again at Hull. They came down in their thousands again and we're just hoping we can get the results we feel we deserve."

So, looking down the fixture list, we now travel to Tottenham Hotspur and welcome Manchester City to the Boleyn Ground...

KN: "Definitely with the way it is going at the moment, everyone is beating everyone. Tottenham are in a great run of form but it's a local derby and we're going to go there with nothing to lose and have a good go at them. Hopefully it'll be the start of the little run that we need."

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