Galey's Views Ahead Of Charlton

UNDERSTANDABLY, everyone was very disappointed after the Wigan game. Before hand, the two newly-promoted sides, that have done brilliantly so far this season, must have both fancied their chances of getting the three points.

For the game, Alan Pardew decided to change from his normal system and play one up front in Marlon Harewood and two wide players in David Bellion and Matthew Etherington.

Clearly this did not work and Pards changed it around swiftly to his favoured 4-4-2 formation. But on the night it was the Hammers' failure to handle the front pair of Jason Roberts and Henri Camara that proved decisive.

However, West Ham is not the only team to have experienced problems with the strong, quick and orthodox pairing of the two Wigan boys.
Clearly Hammers fans thought this was a game they were going to win and there were some boos ringing around the Stadium at the final whistle. I find that hard to understand as so far this season the team have done very well. Sadly, on one of the few occasions they haven't played that well the crowd responded in a negative manner.

I think it's very important to remember that staying in the Premiership is the priority this season and that target will be made easier with the great support the Hammers get.

New Year's Eve at Charlton now becomes an even bigger fixture than it was following that Wigan defeat.

Charlton are a team who are in free fall at the moment, but also a team who can play really good football as they showed earlier in the season. It's important that the Hammers don't allow them to gain any momentum. Football is a cruel game and the Charlton crowd are not behind their team at the moment and it's West Ham's job to keep it that way by coming out of the traps quickly and putting them under pressure.

My forecast for the game is an exciting score draw.