Galey Calls For Hammers To Make It Happen

FORMER Hammers star Tony Gale insists Hammers must make things happen in the Play-off semi-final against Ipswich Town, just like they did in the corresponding fixture last season.

A veteran of three promotions during his 20-year career, Galey knows that there are plenty of regrets in football. That's why he is urging Alan Pardew's men to sieze their chance on Saturday and make it special afternoon at Upton Park.

"West Ham United have got to go out with the attitude that they are going to make things happen," he explained. "To a man, that's what we did in last season's Play-off semi-final second leg and everyone from the players to the fans made it an incredible night.

"It's the same kind of mentality we'll need on Saturday. You can't sit there and wait for things to come your way in a game as big as this, especially playing at home in front of an atmosphere like there will be at the Boleyn Ground.

"At the end of their careers players have plenty of regrets and in my experience the only way to approach an opportunity like this is to go for it.

"I'm sure Alan Pardew will be asking the players which feeling they want to experience this time around - the one they suffered in the Play-off Final against Crystal Palace or the one they savoured after the semi-final against Ipswich. I know which one I'd choose."

Although he admits that a win at Upton Park on Saturday is not essential for the Hammers chances of success, given their fine performance to win 2-0 at Portman Road earlier this season. But he does believe a good start to the tie will be essential.

"If Ipswich are going to be at all vulnerable it's going to be early in Saturday's game," he said. "For me they're the best footballing team in the division and they were unlucky not to go up automatically.

"But they've come a cropper at the end and it'll be a huge blow to them to now be contesting the Play-offs, having led the League for so long earlier in the campaign.

"They are up there to be shot at and West Ham will have to come out firing from the first whistle on Saturday and make the most of what is sure to be a great feeling inside the stadium.

"If they can get an early goal it will knock Ipswich and what happens in the early part of the first leg could set the tone for the rest of the tie.

"Hammers have also got to make the most of their tremendous home support in the first leg. They did that last season, and although it's an about turn in terms of having the home leg first, they need to take advantage of the atmosphere again.

 "Ipswich will no doubt remember what it was like for them at Upton Park last season and that is a mental barrier that could work in West Ham's favour.

"For the crowd's part it's vital that they create a similar atmosphere to the one everyone enjoyed so much against Ipswich last season. I've seen many times how the Boleyn Ground crowd can pull the team along on these occasions and the positive support from the stands will be crucial.

"It should be a great occasion on Saturday and if West Ham United approach the game with the right attitude then there's no reason why they can't go all the way.

"I'm predicting a West Ham United - Derby Final."