Pards striking it rich

Delighted Alan Pardew now has an embarrassment of riches in the striking department, but it is a selection headache that the Hammers' boss will relish during the months ahead.

"I don't expect any of my strikers to play in every league game," revealed Pards after starting with £7million Dean Ashton and Bobby Zamora, before introducing veteran Teddy Sheringham and Marlon Harewood during the 2-0 win over Sunderland at Upton Park. "I need to manage that little pool of players and have got to keep them together because we've shown all year that we're capable of scoring goals.

"I've got to keep all of our strikers here because we'll be so difficult to beat when you take into account the other young players in our side.

"Today wasn't about winning by making tactical substitutions, it was all down to the quality of the players that I could bring off the bench and, remember, I also had Yaniv Katan up my sleeve, too.

"Early on, after our exertions at Arsenal in midweek I thought that we looked tired, jaded and lacked tempo.

"Sunderland put on a great show with 10 men and you couldn't fault their attitude but when Marlon Harewood came on he had more power and energy than anybody else after being rested today.

"There will be other top names who are left out, too, because there's real competition for places now," he warned after seeing Dean Ashton and Paul Konchesky net late first goals for the club to sink the beleaguered Black Cats. "We've all got to manage each other and handle things as well as Marlon Harewood did today.

"Everyone played a part, we got a win and that's what it's got to be all about from now on.

"I told Deano yesterday that I've got a good record with the new strikers who I've signed - they usually score on their debuts!

"It was an important goal for him because he was playing in a team that wasn't at the races and he showed his quality with a difficult finish from a tight angle.

"I've always wanted a strong hand in attack because that's the way I like my teams to play but I haven't been in a position to do that until recently.

"Now, I'm in the luxury position of knowing that whoever starts for me will be fresh.

"We're almost in sight of our first goal of the season - staying in the Premiership. Now we need to see how far we can go because that will give us valuable experience for next year."