Manager on Monday

Sam Allardyce says he is pleased with the way his West Ham United side safely steered themselves away from the situation they found themselves in at the turn of the year.

Saturday's defeat to Champions Manchester City wrapped up the 2013/14 season, but it was the vital victories that preceded its finale which provided the West Ham United manager with his best moments from the season. Last Saturday's 2-0 victory against Tottenham Hotspur took the Hammers to the safety of 40 points and an eventual 13th place finish.

"We were in no real threat of relegation for a while," Big Sam said. "We pulled ourselves out of the bottom three and finished 13th this year. We've got 14 clean sheets and if we'd converted a few more of them into wins we'd be on 46 points.

"Overall the season has been very up and down. The way it panned out in the end was about right, our points total being roughly where you'd expect to finish. However, we've really done the best part of our season in the last 15 games.

"In the last 15 games we've won seven of those so we've nearly got a 50 per cent win rate from those fixtures. To achieve that after where we were in January is a pretty good job."

Despite the strong finish, the season has not always been plain sailing as the Hammers went through a difficult run of results at the turn of the year. Big Sam believes that next season should prove more straightforward for a side that will be kicking off their third consecutive campaign in the Barclays Premier League.

"The lads have withstood the pressure and we're established in the Premier League for the second season in a row.

"In statistic terms, the third year should get better but that depends on how much you can improve your squad with new players. In three years you've had the opportunity to improve your squad and we can ask for a bit more from the players so we will hopefully finish in a better position next season."

City secured their second Premier League title as their expensively-assembled squad provided a performance worthy of Champions. Big Sam admitted the better side had won, although he felt his team had suffered at the hands of some bad defending and misfortune.

"The real sickener for me was letting that goal in just before half time so we went in 1-0 down at the break. We should have kept it as tight as we did in the first half at the start of the second half, but we gave a goal away from a corner.

"City are a fantastic side with quality players and they had them all out in the team on Saturday. It was always going to be a difficult task but we tried to do as best as we possibly could."