Noble looking ahead to Saints test

With the international break now over, West Ham United midfielder Mark Noble is confident the team are ready for a tough away day this Sunday.

The Sky cameras will be present as the Hammers travel to Southampton, bidding to put all memory of a defeat to Stoke last time out, firmly behind them.

Noble says the nature of the performance against Stoke took the players by surprise and says they're eager to make amends at St Mary's.

He said: "I can't remember the last time we played that badly to be honest and I don't think I'll be the first one to say that.

"Everyone came off not knowing what had gone wrong and it was a strange feeling in the changing room after.

"When you've got an international break straight after you can't get back out on the pitch and fix it, we've got Southampton on Sunday who are a good side with loads of good players, spent loads of money and it's live on Sky so it's a great chance for us to put things right."

It will be just over two weeks since the defeat to Stoke when Sam Allardyce's side step out against Southampton, a break in which the team have been hard at work.

The squad flew to Barcelona for a friendly against Espanyol with a young Hammers side emerging with a 1-0 victory; Noble believes the trip has boosted everyone's morale.

"It was a blessing in disguise really because we went out there and won, we performed well and the trip helped the team bond.

"At the end of the day it was a bad result against Stoke but we're a good bunch of players and we're looking to correct it as soon as possible.

"The lads on international duty go away and have the games for their country to put it out of their system but we have a good bunch of staff here that don't dwell on anything, we've trained hard and had the game against Espanyol which was a good experience."

Preparation for the Saints game has been disrupted by several injuries including the news that Andy Carroll has picked up a new foot problem following his return to training.

Whilst it's not yet known how long the forward will be out for, midfield man Noble says his absence is a big blow but the team will do their best to get by without him.

He said: "Obviously he wants to get back playing but you feel for him because he's missed a whole pre-season, missed the tour and missed the banter around the lads whilst he's stuck in the physio's room.

"To have him come back out smiling and then getting injured again is tough but that's football and you never know what's around the corner. He's going to have to pick himself up and get back fit because we need him.

"We've got a big enough squad to cope with it, we might need to wrap Modibo in cotton wool at the moment and we've just signed Petric so hopefully he can come in and help us."

A back four which has conceded just once in three league outings so far this season will need to be on their guard against a man who's recently received international recognition.

Rickie Lambert has played a part in England's last three matches finding the net twice, and Noble was full of praise for the man who will be trying to score against them come Sunday.

"It's a credit to him that he's worked his way up through the leagues. I've played against him a few times although I don't know him personally I've always thought he was a top player.

"As a holding midfielder you're always in close contact with a centre-forward, the ball was getting fizzed into him and he was laying it off and as a midfield player you can appreciate that play.

"You can see he scores goals but when a player has come up through the leagues like him you can't help but be happy for him."