Michael: We Needed That

Michael Carrick says that the win over Blackburn, as important as it was for league points, was also the perfect tonic after the defeat at Old Trafford which he admits "shamed the club."

"It is just what we needed," says Michael. "We had to get back on the pitch and show that Sunday was not us, that is was false - and I think we did that on Wednesday," he says.

"There were some rollickings on Sunday but I think deep down the lads knew that we weren't good enough and the gaffer didn't really have to say too much to put that across to the lads - because we all knew what went wrong.

"I was hurt inside after that match, and it was good that we had the Blackburn game so soon after because we could get it out of our system after we admittedly shamed the club - and ourselves - at Old Trafford.

"We are just thankful that we had the chance to show that that performance was not characteristic. Wednesday night was more us, and hopefully now there is more to come."

At 1-0 down at half time, though, he could have been forgiven for thinking 'here we go again.'

"I think if you start doing that you might as well pack up and start playing first division football - we were not thinking that at all," he says defiantly.

"Thankfully Paolo has done his bit in the box, got us the penalty, and changed the game for us.

"But when we went 1-0 down it is the last thing you think about, otherwise you might just as well give up.

"It was relief after that first home win and West Brom got beaten as well so it was a massive game for us.

"We knew beforehand what a big game it was; we have come out with flying colours and shown in the way we played that we are all behind him Glenn, as we keep saying."

It has certainly been a good couple of days, even if West Ham still have a lot of work yet to do.

A defeat on Wednesday, and a Bolton win against Everton the previous night would have left a massive seven point gap between the Hammers and the 'safe' fourth from bottom place, and Michael admits: "Seven points is a big gap and we are just thankful everything has gone our way over the last couple of days."

Michael is delighted for Jermain Defoe to get the winner after coming off the bench, and he adds: "It was hard for Jermain because he has not done a lot wrong, really, and was at Old Trafford on his own, fighting a losing battle.

"But how many times has he come on and scored a vital goal?

"So all credit to him for bouncing back - and now he has given the gaffer a nice problem."

Indeed - a nice problem about who to select for the Liverpool match.

"It is a big game but we tend to perform in the big games so we are looking forward to it now," he says, "and hopefully we can carry a bit of momentum on over the next few games."