Fan Force

ALAN Pardew has admitted that West Ham's fans will play a crucial role in the Club's promotion challenge.

Pards takes his team to Turf Moor to face Burnley tonight and is hoping the Hammers will be backed by the brilliant travelling support they have received this season.

"The fans have been excellent over the last few games," he insisted. "At Wigan on Saturday they gave us tremendous support, and even in the two home games before Easter when results didn't go our way they still backed the team right to the final whistle.

"I think our fans have made a conscious decision to put the problems and frustrations of this season behind them, and really back the team in this final part of the season.

"I thank them for that, because if they support us like they have been doing recently then they're going to play a vital part in our push for promotion over these last seven games.

"This is going to be a really tough run-in and we need every single West Ham fan behind us right now.

"It's no secret that this team plays better when there is less pressure on it, and we reaped the reward of that at Wigan.

"More than at most clubs, the fans are so important to West Ham United. They've been brilliant and I hope they continue to back us throughout this tough period, because we'll be going all out to deliver what they want."