Michael's Praise

Michael Carrick is full of praise for Matthew Etherington, who has won this season's Hammer of the year award.

"He has been different class so it is fair that he got it," enthuses Michael.

Michael came second in the supporters' poll and he admits:

"I didn't expect to get runner-up, because I haven't played too many games compared to the rest of them.

"But I must have done all right so I am happy to collect the award.

"You just go out and play your own game, giving it your best shot and hoping it pays off."

Is there a possibility Michael will stick around if West Ham go up?

"I don't see why not," he says.

"I am happy here and I have been here quite a while now so I am settled.

"We will just have to see what happens - but there are the playoffs to contend with first."

Does the speculation bother him?

"I have had that for ages now," he shrugs.

"It always crops up at the end of the season but you just have to get on with it until anything else happens - and that is what I am going to do."

Does the affection he gets from the fans play a part in the decision-making process?

"Yes it does - because they have been great to me," he insists.

"I have never had any problems with them and they have always been supportive of me.

"They have shown that with this award that they are behind me and it is a good feeling to have that."

So is he striving for a Cockney accent then?

"No chance - I don't want to work on that!"

The awards will be presented to the players before the game on Saturday, as well as the club's Young Hammer of the year, which goes to Anton Ferdinand.