Walker disappointed on return to Bescot

It wasn't quite the homecoming Jimmy Walker had been hoping for on his return to the Bescot Stadium last night as the Hammers' reserves were beaten 2-0 by Aston Villa. But Jimmy, who spent over a decade between the sticks for Walsall before signing for West Ham United, was pleased to be back in action nonetheless.

"The pitch hasn't got any better - that's for sure," Jimmy joked. "No, it would have been nice to come back and celebrate a win, but it wasn't to be. It was a hard game but it was a good game.

"The lads got what they needed out of it and that was the main thing. They got another 90 minutes under their belts.

"James Collins did really well on his return. It was a good 90 minutes for him, just a pity about the result.

Having been forced to sit out most of the season with a problematic knee injury, Jimmy is steadily returning to peak fitness as well.

"I'm getting there," he said. "That's three games on the spin for me in three weeks. The knee feels brilliant at the minute and that's the main thing so I just have to keep going and plodding on. Hopefully after a couple more games we'll be buzzing."

But, after watching Sunday's last-gasp 4-3 defeat to Tottenham from the substitute's bench, Jimmy had just one word to sum up the Hammers' previous Premiership encounter: "Heartbreaking."

"I've never seen the lads so flat after a game," he admitted. "It was so disappointing. We had all the highs and lows and then a massive low at the end. Even a draw would have felt like a loss anyway.

"It was one of those games, but we've got to bounce back. We've got to keep fighting. We've shown what a good quality team we are, so we have to keep fighting for the next 9 games.

"I think after that performance we've got the momentum going and hopefully we'll take that onto the next 9 and make a battle of it.
"Sometimes it's nice to have a game straight after when you're not thinking about it so much. But we'll try to make the next ten days work in our favour. The gaffer and the staff will be making sure we work as hard as we can so we're strong for the next game. It's going to test us but we have to go out there and get the win."