Diop: We must focus 100 per cent on Fulham

Official Programme cover versus Fulham


Issa Diop and his West Ham teammates have the opportunity to secure another memorable home win when they return to Premier League action against Fulham at London Stadium on Friday evening.

The Hammers have not played since drawing 1-1 at Crystal Palace on 9 February, with Pellegrini taking his squad away to southern Spain for a warm-weather training camp to fill the gap in the fixture list.

The players returned to England refreshed on Saturday and have spent the week at Rush Green, making preparations to host their west London rivals.

Diop says the Irons must make home advantage count if they are to achieve their targets between now and the end of his debut season in England.

We must focus 100 per cent on Fulham and make sure we are up to the challenge

Issa Diop

“We play against Fulham, a London team, and we’re at home, so we know we need to win and we cannot falter,” said the Frenchman, who was part of the West Ham team which won 2-0 at Craven Cottage in the reverse fixture in December.

“Every game we play is very important and a big test for us, whether it is against Fulham or against Manchester City, who we face next week. We must focus 100 per cent on Fulham and make sure we are up to the challenge.”

While a large number of Fulham’s squad are new to the Premier League this season, with the Whites having been promoted last summer before bringing in a host of new faces from overseas, Diop knows the likes of defensive midfielder Jean Michael Seri, centre-back Maxime Le Marchand and record signing Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa better than most.

The trio all played in France last season, where Diop faced them as captain of Toulouse, losing on all three occasions. The No21 is hoping for a better result this time around.

“I know some of their players because I played a lot of times against them in Ligue 1,” he confirmed. “They are all very good players, but I hope we can win this game.”


Issa Diop celebrates


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