Zarate pumped for derby day

Mauro Zarate is eager to secure the bragging rights when West Ham United travel to Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday.

Not only does the No10 know how much this London derby means to Hammers supporters, but he is also keen to get one over fellow Argentines Mauricio Pochettino and Federico Fazio.

For a player who has already played in derby matches in Buenos Aires for Velez Sarsfield, Birmingham for Birmingham City, Rome for Lazio and Milan for Internazionale, Sunday’s trip to White Hart Lane holds no fears.

“We need to win again and this is a perfect match for us because it’s a derby and it’s away, so I think we have to do the perfect match to win,” Zarate told West Ham TV.

“Obviously I know – we all know – how important this is to the fans. They always want us to win against Tottenham and we will do our best to win the match.

“I know Pochettino and also Fazio, as we played together when we won the Under-20 World Cup [in 2007]. Pochettino is a good manager and is doing really well.

“They have many good players and we have many good players, so it will be a nice match.”

Zarate will be one of those called upon to make up for the absence of Dimitri Payet, who has been ruled out until 2016 with a high ankle sprain.

The South American has the talent to both create and score goals, as he has done already this season, and he is ready to add to those he has netted in wins over Arsenal, Crystal Palace and Chelsea at White Hart Lane.

“Injuries are always really bad, but even more when they are injuries to important players,” he continued. “Dimitri is an important player for us, so we have to do our best [in his absence].

“If I am needed to play, I am always ready to start. We are ready to win and to come back to the good way. Like I told you before, it is a perfect match for us.

“I hope I can score again like I did against Chelsea!”