David Keeps Trying

David Noble insists he will carry on working hard to try and earn a regular place in the starting line-up at Upton Park.

David, highly impressive in the reserves last season since joining on a free transfer from Arsenal where he was frustrated by his lack of first team opportunities, earned a new, one year contract for this campaign and has been a regular member of the squad.

But midfield competition is strong, even in the absence of the injured Michael Carrick, and David's substitute appearance at Gresty Road on Tuesday night when he came on for Niclas Alexandersson was a brief one.

"It is always nice to have competition if you are starting but I will just keep doing my bit," he says philosophically.

"Hopefully I will get run-outs and the chance to prove myself - it is a long old season with plenty of games."

But his assessment, albeit largely from the bench on Tuesday, was a positive one and he adds:

"I thought the lads worked really well and it was the best performance of the season, especially at Crewe which is a tricky place to go to.

"If you go places like that and aren't 100% you can get turned over but the boys were on it - and David Connolly looked really good."

It was, though, a mixed night for the Irish international striker, who picked up his fifth booking of the season following a collision with Crewe goalkeeper Clayton Ince, and for that he will pick up a one match ban.

"He got the two goals he deserved and played well all round, and he was unlucky to be booked," says David, who once spent a spell with Watford on loan, where Connolly himself began his career.

"It was definitely harsh; the keeper has just cleared it, he has come across the clearance and slipped up, and taken his legs.

"There was nothing to do with maliciousness at all but refs don't always see it the way players do.

"That is his fifth booking now and he is a bit disappointed."

The win pushed West Ham up to second place in the first division, but David says it is premature to read too much into that at this stage.

"It is still early and a long old way to go but it is nice to be up there at any time."