Clarke confident

Steve Clarke is confident West Ham United can take a giant step towards Barclays Premier League safety at Liverpool on Monday.

Clarke was one of a number of West Ham United coaches and backroom staff members who helped first-team coach Kevin Keen's All-Star XI secure the Mike Keen Charity Cup at Wycombe Wanderers FC on Thursday evening.

The match, which was held in honour of Kevin's late father, the popular former Wycombe manager who died a year ago, saw Gianfranco Zola score twice in an entertaining 5-4 victory over a Wanderers Legends side.

This morning, Clarke, Zola and Keen were back on the training pitches at Chadwell Heath, preparing for Monday's Premier League trip to Liverpool.

"It was great to be asked to take part, but I'm not sure I enjoyed it! When it's for a good cause and for someone you know, and of course I've worked with Kevin for a while now, it was nice to come along and support him and his family.

"The relegation battle takes care of itself. We go back to work on Friday morning and focus on the fixture on Monday night at Liverpool and, if we continue doing what we have been doing, we'll be OK."

Having lined up alongside the likes of Zola, Keen, reserve-team manager Alex Dyer and a host of former Hammers at Adams Park, Clarke said focus has now turned to the trip to Anfield.

West Ham go into the weekend four points clear of the relegation zone, with a vastly-superior goal difference to their rivals, knowing a Hammers' victory at Liverpool for the first time since 1963 would be huge for their survival hopes.

"I'm confident, but then I was confident when we weren't four points clear. Obviously, the last couple of results were good for us and we have to build on them. The finishing line is in sight and we have to keep going.

"It's been a difficult season right from the start, but we're still in there fighting. We have to achieve the objective of staying in the Premier League and we're all confident we can do that."

Clarke likened the pressure of leading West Ham clear of relegation to that of challenging for trophies at the top-end of the table.

"When I first went into coaching, I was challenging for trophies at the other end of the table, but there is pressure on that as well - in every football match, there is pressure involved. Given your objectives at whatever football club you are at, there is always a pressure. That's why we do it and what we're in the game for.

"The best thing to do now is to get the points that we require. We're not sure what the points tally will be, so we go to Liverpool, we give a good account of ourselves and then we take stock on Tuesday. We see where we are, and build for the next game after that.

"We're focused on the next game. That's as far as we look. At this moment in time, it would be foolish for us to look further ahead, so we look at the next game and getting the points required to keep West Ham United in the Premier League."