Big Sam happy with squad

Sam Allardyce is looking forward to Saturday's match with Millwall for a number of reasons.

The West Ham United manager will be looking to see his squad's reaction to Tuesday's 5-1 defeat at Ipswich Town as well as the possible introduction of his deadline day signings.

Big Sam conceded that he is considering making changes following the midweek defeat at Portman Road. While Ravel Morrison, Nicky Maynard and Ricardo Vaz Te will hope to be involved for the first time, the likes of Abdoulaye Faye, Joey O'Brien and Sam Baldock will also be eager to get the call from the manager.

"We're certainly going to include Ricardo Vaz Te and Nicky Maynard in the squad but I'd have been doing that anyway. After a performance like that, you have to consider if you give that group another chance or do you make changes to give yourself the best chance of winning - that's been the topic of discussion for the past day or so. We will make our minds up on Friday depending on the players available.

"We have a nice deep squad now in terms of numbers and talent, which hasn't been the case for a while. We will hopefully make the right selections to win on Saturday."

Whoever plays on Saturday, the manager is hoping for a big reaction from his players after they held a detailed post mortem into Tuesday's disappointing trip to Suffolk

"We watched the game and it wasn't very nice watching. We spent probably a little bit longer on this one, but we do watch every game to review it. It's not as if we told them to watch this game as punishment.

"Generally, when you win it's a little easier to watch a game back and a little shorter because you're watching the good things and asking the players to keep it up. When they are seeing the bad things, I'm glad to see there was more discussion between them on the wheres and whys things went wrong.

"It was calm and we were in the analysis room and that's better than having an emotional discussion in the dressing room. It gave us the chance to have a tactical discussion. It was a really big shock for me to see what happened and I was almost speechless at the end of the game because I couldn't believe what I was watching.

"I can only suggest it was a one-off and that we're going to get back on track. Most of the time, this season, we've bounced back. We've only once had back-to-back defeats this season so we've got to win on Saturday and put it behind us."

On paper West Ham look a good bet to bounce back to winning ways against a Millwall side sitting 21st in the table, but Big Sam knows he and his players cannot afford to be complacent.

"In the circumstances, form doesn't mean much. Only time will tell. I remember that Kenny Jackett was on not such a great run and they went to Leicester and Darius Henderson scored a hat-trick so they are capable of putting on a performance and winning anywhere.

"They have some experienced players, so we've got to be on top of our game. I've said all along this season that teams at the bottom are very dangerous because they lift their game, as we saw with Ipswich, and if we're not fully on our game we can get caught out.

"It just cannot be there. We got our way to the top of the table and had to wait a long time for our next game, which is what we didn't want to do. We wanted to play last Saturday, but we couldn't.

"You cannot take anything for granted because that is when complacency sneaks in. That's the problem with all the expectation because the over-confidence can come to the players.

"We're very fortunate that other people didn't do as well as they wanted and we're still two points clear. At the moment, the biggest danger to us is Birmingham because of the form that they're in. All the rest of us, including us, are not in our best form of the season - Southampton, Middlesbrough, Cardiff.

"Birmingham and Reading have been the big threat - Birmingham have taken 13 out of their last 15 points - and there is always somebody who comes out of the pack. The answer to that is to get back to our top form and, as the games tick away, the distance becomes ever greater. The points gap might be the same, but the games become less and so do the opportunities to make up the gap.

"We've got to make sure we keep winning, because if we don't then somebody will catch us."