Kitson Can Contribute

Paul Goddard says that Paul Kitson still has a part to play at West Ham.

With Fredi Kanoute suffering intermittent injury problems, and Paolo Di Canio suspended against Liverpool, he could well get another chance to shine after his hat-trick against Charlton last month, and Paul says: "He had a little groin injury after the Sunderland game but he is okay now - up front is one area where we have a little bit of cover.

"I'm certain he can play a part. Paul has trained very hard this year, he is a good technical finisher, and he was obviously delighted to play in the Charlton game.

"He wants another taste of that but he is realistic and knows he is fighting for his spot and that we have some exceptionally talented players at the club."

Paul's contract runs out in the summer and the Hammers assistant boss says: "He is playing for himself and his pride, he has had a few set backs over the last couple of years but I'm sure Paul is revelling in being involved again and playing."

Paul feels the upcoming batch of games will be a huge pointer to which way West Ham's season is heading and he adds: "We've got a little run unbeaten going and we want to keep it going on Saturday - a draw or a win would be fantastic.

"I have one eye on the league table, it is very tight and if we have a good Christmas we could find ourselves in the top six or top eight, but if we have a bad one we are back in the mire.

"It's top half of the table we are looking at and we have talked to the players about that already."

Despite the fact that Paul feels the squad is too small, he says you cannot make allowances during a match and explains: "It is a competitive game and people get injured - you can't expect to play any football match without competing, and you have to rule the tentative side of things out and hope luck is on your side.

"If injuries come along players have to come in and do the job."