West Ham United's outstanding defensive record this season has been a real team effort.

However, when the Hammers' back four has been breached, goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainen has again proved his pedigree with a series of superb performances.

Fresh from another fine display in the 3-0 Barclays Premier League win at Tottenham Hotspur, the No22 sat down for The Big Interview to discuss the victory at Spurs, Saturday's visit of Manchester City and the demands of international football.

The lads must be buzzing still after win at Spurs, Jussi?

JJ: "Yeah, it was a great win at a great time because we were drifting towards that bottom three and we didn't want to stay there for long. It was the first time since I have been at the Club that we have been in that bottom three and it was a great response from the players and a good win, but we need to keep going. But if you look at the Man City game, if we can get anything out of that then it could be a turning point for us and make it a decent start because at the moment it is an iffy start."

How would you assess West Ham's start to the season overall, then?

JJ:  "Playing-wise we have done very well, but we have just been missing a little bit of luck and maybe one or two decisions have gone against us. If you look at the Hull City game they got a penalty which was never a penalty and we should have had one. So it just little fractions that have been going against us I think."

Manchester City are a top-quality side but have had some blips, so what sort of chance do we have of recording another victory on Saturday?

JJ: "If City turn up and play their best it is going to be extremely difficult for us to do anything, but we will see. Last season our home form was fantastic, but this season we have had two defeats already so we want to make sure that if we can't win the game, we don't lose it, that is our main aim. I wouldn't take a draw now, but if things don't go our way and City plays a good game, it is going to be hard to beat them, but we have to make sure that we are hard to beat as well."

You are the longest-serving goalkeeper in the Barclays Premier League at the age of 38. What do you put your longevity down to?

JJ: "I think there are a lot of little factors that come together for that. I have been very lucky to have two good goalkeeping coaches. First 13 years at Bolton with Fred Barber and here I am spending a second season with Martyn Margetson. They are both top coaches. Then there are other factors like I really like to work with Big Sam and the way he has brought science into the game. When I came to him at Bolton we were a Championship side then and he built the team up slowly and brought in people to make sure we were looking after ourselves and preparing ourselves properly for the match on a Saturday. Experience as a goalkeeper is important for me and the main aim is to be consistent. You know you are going to make three or four mistakes during a season. Sometimes they go into the back of the net and sometimes they don't. You just have to recover from that and keep focusing on the right things. As long as I work my hardest during the week, whatever happens on Saturday is because I have worked my hardest in preparation."

Unfortunately, you have had to pick three direct free-kicks out of the net already this season?

JJ: "I am disappointed with one of them, but that has been analysed and we have put it behind us. The first Leighton Baines free-kick I think I might have got, but it is always little fractions for what you can do. It is always to say that afterwards. If you look at last season, we only conceded one goal direct from a free-kick and that was at Aston Villa when Charles N'Zogbia scored. Apart from that I don't think there was any, but if you look at this season there seems to be lots flying. I don't know why that is, maybe we have just been a bit unlucky. Baines is not going to hit that free-kick in again, so it is just one of those things. There is no point in trying to change things, it is just a matter of hoping that they are the only three that go in this season."

Do you practice dealing with direct free-kicks on the training ground?

JJ: "We always go through the free-kicks and set-plays every week to make sure we are doing the right things and find out what has happened and where people should be. There is no point in changing things. We have let in three, but they have gone now and unless it starts happening every week then we will have to look at something else. Experience will help me not to get lost in the whole situation and the important thing is to just focus on the next free-kick when it comes along."

With all the attention around FIFA World Cup qualifying this week, do you miss international football with Finland?

JJ: "Maybe a little bit. Those big games are a great experience, but all that travelling and the hotels are the part I don't miss and that is why I made my decision three years ago to retire and it gives me more time to spend with the family and also recover from the games and train and give me more rest."

Finland had a near-impossible job to try to qualify for Brazil 2014 after being grouped with Spain and France, but they drew in Spain and will come third in their group. That's not a bad showing, all things considered?

JJ: "Yes, it seems that every time in qualifying we seem to get one or two massive teams and I think you need a little bit of luck in that draw. I think a few of the older generation like Jari Litmanen have retired now so the younger boys need to come through, so hopefully we can get a nice draw for the European Championship.

Finally, you are 38 now, so how long can you continue playing?

JJ: "As long as I can. The goalkeeping coach and the backroom staff are fantastic and look after me pretty well. They know my needs and give me one or two extra days off now and then when I need them. We still do plenty of work in training, but I am not doing half as much work as I did when I was younger. I used to work extremely hard and maybe that gives you the basis to carry on when you do get older. In the end I will go week by week and game by game and just see how I go. My contract is until the end of the season and that is what my aim is at the moment [to earn a new deal]."