Cole at the double

Carlton Cole is firing on all cylinders and determined to do everything in his power to maintain West Ham United's Barclays Premier League status.

Cole's Boxing Day brace - his first in league football - saw the Hammers climb off the bottom of the table courtesy of a 3-1 victory at Fulham.

The No9 was on hand to poke Dickson Etuhu's wayward touch past Mark Schwarzer for the equaliser before scoring West Ham's match-clinching third with 17 minutes remaining.

The two-goal hero put the success at Craven Cottage down to a combination of clinical finishing and sheer hard work and determination.

"It's a much-needed result for us," Cole told WHUTV. "The lads all pulled in the same direction. You saw the spirit when we went a goal down. We didn't get disappointed. We didn't let it affect us and that's what we really needed - everyone to pull in the same direction and that's what we did.

"I always knew this would be a period which might define our season. I knew we were going to get something at Fulham - I just had that feeling. These things do happen. Everything went our way.

"The boys worked really hard. We left everything on that pitch and fair play to all my team-mates because everyone did the right thing to get the result and that's what we needed."

Cole's goals took his tally to six in his last six appearances against the Cottagers but, with just five strikes to his name this season, the 27-year-old is eager to hit the target far more often over the coming months.

"I don't know [why I score so often against Fulham]. It's crazy but that's the way the game is and hopefully it can kick-start my season and I can get among the goals a bit more because my goals are really needed at the moment."

Cole has now scored four times in his last three starts in claret and blue, having also netted a pair in the 4-0 Carling Cup quarter-final victory over Manchester United.

The England forward puts his recent upturn in form down to finally getting over the hamstring and knee injuries that blighted his 2009/10 campaign.

"My body is top-notch again. I feel strong and I feel powerful. I did have to recover from my injury and it took ages mentally and physically. I think, right now, I'm on key and I've got no excuses - I've got to play well as the club really needs me to pull my weight and that's what I need to do."

Feeling positive in body and mind, Cole believes West Ham can build on their first away league victory in 28 attempts by ending 2010 on a high when Everton come to visit on Tuesday evening.

"The fans are happy that we got an away win because it's massive for our confidence and we now want to take that forward."