Parker determined for derby

Scott Parker has spoken of the "massive confidence in the changing room" as West Ham United prepare to take on Tottenham Hotspur on Monday.

The Hammers have been boosted by a terrific 1-1 draw with the league leaders Chelsea and a solid 2-0 win against Portsmouth on Boxing Day last Saturday. After two strong displays at the Boleyn Ground, the short trip to north London will be made with spirits high and plenty of optimism.

Parker said: "It is a tough game on Monday but every game in the Premier League is tough. You look at the table and there is never an easy one. There is massive confidence in the changing room. We have come out with good results against Chelsea and Portsmouth.

"If ever there is a good time to go to White Hart Lane it is now. We are looking forward to it." His mood has been brightened by the resilience within the team of late with players putting themselves on the line to ensure an upturn in results. "We have been a bit more solid over the last few weeks. It is something we haven't had for the large part of the season."

The midfielder admitted though that the strain of two matches in three days would take its toll on both squads, with Tottenham having also played on Boxing Day when they drew 0-0 at Fulham. "It is really soon to be playing on Monday. Our bodies will be under pressure, but that is the way it is."

Although bothered by injury in the second half of last season, Parker has - touch wood - had a fairly constant run this campaign. "I've hit a good bit of form and I feel quite strong," he said, his modesty preventing him from acknowledging the widely-held belief that there can be few better midfielders in the country at present.

"It is like anything when things are going well. You have to keep the momentum going and keep running with it. On a personal level, it is going well and we have picked up a couple of results. I had a good pre-season and when you are playing games, your body is conditioned for that. I have wear and tear after games but it is going OK."

He was also quick to deflect the attention away from himself, for instance he was at pains to praise his midfield colleague Radoslav Kovac, who has been "absolutely brilliant" in recent weeks.

Yet try as he might to put the focus on others, Parker's form is such that many are talking up his chances of an England recall - he was named in Fabio Capello's squad to face Germany back in November 2008. He is first and foremost focused on his club responsibilities, though. He said: "I get asked the question quite a lot and all I can do is keep playing well for West Ham and see where it gets me."