Avram on Tuesday

Avram Grant has held his pre-match press conference ahead of Wednesday's Carling Cup semi-final second leg at Birmingham City.

The West Ham United manager discussed how much he is looking forward to the game and trying to steer the Hammers to Wembley for the first time in 30 years, as well as the club's perfect record in knockout competitions this term.

Grant also spoke warmly about new signing Gary O'Neil and other possible transfer targets, as well as the potential move to the London 2012 Olympic Stadium.

Avram on the Carling Cup semi-final second leg…

Except for Obinna and Piquionne, who are suspended, we will have a meeting after training and see who is available and who is not. We are in a semi-final, so whoever plays, our target is very clear.

I think it is most important what it means to the club to be in Wembley again after such a long time. It is good for us and good for the players' confidence. Most importantly, it is good for the supporters to be there.

If I may say, we deserve it because our way to this game was very good. The first game [against Oxford United] we won in the last minute and in the second we won away at Sunderland and played very good.

Then, against Stoke we showed a lot of character and the game against Manchester United is the only game that they lost and we played brilliant.

If there is such a thing as deserve then we deserve it, but I know that nobody will give us presents. I know it is very important both to us and to Birmingham.

Avram on West Ham United's perfect cup record this season…

It is a good record [six wins out of six] and we've played some good football too. All the games were high-quality games and we scored a lot of goals and won. We want to continue with this and get to the final.

By the football side, I cannot say there is a big difference [between the way we have played in the cups and the Barclays Premier League]. I don't know why but we have been more efficient in the cups.

If you saw our last game against Everton we deserved to be 3-0 up at half-time. In the cup, we have used our chances better. I think that was the difference. I also think the players are more relaxed in this competition.

Avram on the atmosphere at St Andrews…

At the end of the day it's a game on the pitch. Our supporters helped us in the first leg because we were with ten players and they supported us, but we are used to playing away games.

Avram on Frederic Piquionne being suspended for being sent-off at Everton after receiving a second yellow card for excessive celebation…

I am very upset about this because I don't understand the logic of this rule. I am trying to understand it but unfortunately I don't.

The most happy moment for any player is when he scores a goal - even more if you score a few minutes before the end. You go and celebrate with the supporters and the supporters are the team, not just any person.

If you ask me, I would encourage you to celebrate with the supporters before any other people but this is the rule. I respect any rules, but I think they need to be a little bit more logical. I don't like it, but what can I do?

Avram on signing Gary O'Neil…

Valon Behrami needed to leave for other reasons so Gary O'Neil has come instead of him. He's a good player, experienced and played in the Premier League. He is very energetic and I'm sure he can be a good player for us.

When you have January, you want to sign players on 1 January but we couldn't do it before and also other deals. Now it is the last week of the window, so it is not specially for the semi-final, even though I am happy that he can help us tomorrow.

He is a player that I always thought about, but we had players in this position like Valon Behrami. When we knew that Behrami couldn't play, Gary was the best option and he will be good for us.

Avram on Valon Behrami…

The deal is nearly done. I think he will join Fiorentina if everything is done. It is just formalities and, of course, money!

Avram on other possible targets…

I don't want to speak about other deals. We have many names linked to us and most of them are not true.

We have one or two more targets that we want to do and we will talk about them when we do the deals. There is no use speaking about this now because then you will start to ask me about thousands of names.

I feel that we need to do it and I want to do it because it will be good for us, but I never have 100 per cent confidence that a deal will be done in football!

We started this a long time ago - not in January. We have a very good scouting system and good people there. All my staff are involved in this. If we think about any player, we watch him and see if he can be good for us and then we look at the financial issues and see if we can bring him in or not. I am not involved in the financial situation - only about the budget.

It will be around two more players!

Avram on the Olympic Stadium…

I don't know so much about the situation. I just know that the stadium is in our area and that the people in our area deserve the stadium and it belongs to them. I don't see any other possibility in this situation because the situation is very clear and we are just waiting to see what will happen. I think it would be good.

I'm not so involved about this but I always think a decision like this is better sooner rather than later because then there are other influences and other things. I think they know all the information now and can take the decision but I don't know what's happened there.