Alan On Robbie

Alan Pardew is hoping that Robbie Stockdale's hunger to play first team football will be of benefit to West Ham in the next month - and beyond.

Robbie has originally signed a short term deal, but that could be extended, and Alan is delighted to have secured his second signing in as many days.

"I think he is hungry and he wants to prove Middlesbrough wrong that he should be playing there, and that is what I want - players that are hungry," he explains.

"It is definitely an option for Robbie to come here on a long term basis; the ball is in his court."

Robbie has in effect been displaced by the arrival of Danny Mills at the Riverside, and Alan adds:

"I am sure Robbie thinks he is better than him and that is good - he can come and show us here."

Both Robbie and Wednesday's recruit Hayden Mullins are, of course, British players, but Alan insists he is not limiting his search to players from this country.

"I wouldn't read too much into that," "he says, "but I know they are two sound characters as well as two good players - and I think that is important.

"Nationality is no issue with me but good character is, and I want the right people that are going to fit in with the disciplines that we are going to put into the club and the way we want the club to go forward.

"West Ham fans want their players to represent their club in the right manner and they are the sort of players I want to bring in."

To have taken over as manager, prepared the side for a game, and brought in two new players to the club means that Alan has, to coin a phrase, hit the ground running, and he adds:

"I am hopefully going to see the family tonight which will be nice as I haven't seen them for three days.

"In any walk of life it is still important to be with your family and I am looking forward to that.

"It has been a hectic three days - transfer dealings are, I feel, the most stressful part of it.

"You have to deal with all the hurdles that are put in your way and when you think you have got the deal done something else happens.

"We thought, for instance, that we had Robbie for three months and it was cut to a month, those sorts of things.

"But that is out of the way now and we can look forward to Saturday, preparing the team, and getting on with the game."

Added his implementation of new ideas at the club is the fact that he is doing so having come in from the outside - something no manager in the modern era at West Ham, Lou Macari excepted, has done.

"In some ways that is good," he says, "and there are some things that have been going on for years here that perhaps need to be tightened up.

"I hope to take the club forward and any manager in any industry has to do that - improve it and take it forward."

* Robbie becomes only the fourth player to join the Hammers from Boro - the last one being in May 1935!

Joseph Nicholson Bell swapped Ayresome for Upton Park, at a cost of £200, following not so hot on the heels of left half Frank R Piercey and winger Christopher Carrick in 1904...