Steve: Keep The Winning Habit

Steve Bywater says he is not bothered whether West Ham play at home or away in the first leg of the playoffs - assuming they make them - but does want to keep the winning habit going against Wigan on Sunday.

"The lads have been saying that if you finish third or fourth you get the home game second but it doesn't really matter to me because you have got to play them both anyway," says Steve.

"We want to beat them although if there is not as much pressure on us to win then we can take control in the play-offs; it is momentum, like a ride.

"Hopefully after three clean sheets on the bounce we can then get one at Wigan and move on to the play-offs.

"We haven't achieved anything; what we want to achieve is Premiership football for next year and until we do that we haven't done anything.

"To be honest, I am just seeing it as having another four games left and then we can go on holiday."

Steve did not play in the previous two meetings with Wigan - both wins - as David James was still at the club, but, having kept three clean sheets on the trot, he is hoping to extend that sequence.

He has kept seven out of 19 so far following the 4-0 defeat of Watford, and he is keen to praise his back four for their help.

"They only had two or three chances and the defence was good against a half decent side," he says.

"It was a very good day and the victory was sweeter for the fact that Wigan lost at the same time on Saturday - though Notts. Forest are not a bad side, and people there are proving themselves to a new manager for next year.

"The lads thought Forest might win, which they did, and we knew Crystal Palace would probably beat Walsall.

"Michael Carrick ran the show against Watford and Don Hutchison has come in and made a real difference with aerial balls and holding it up.

"We have to lose 4-0 at Wigan to miss the playoffs and that is not going to happen, but we still have to do a job on them - everyone wants to win, that is what it is all about."

Steve says it was right to eschew the traditional lap of honour for the 'last' home game of the season against Watford and concludes:

"We have got to come back to Upton Park and play one more game and hopefully the lap of honour will be at Cardiff..."