Noble: The last two weeks have been fantastic
Mark Noble does not want the 2018/19 season to end.
The captain is in outstanding form, West Ham United are winning matches and playing a brand of football that has hugely excited the Claret and Blue Army.
Victory at Watford on the final day of the campaign will guarantee a top-ten finish for the first time in four years, but Noble would rather keep playing!
“The last two weeks have been fantastic,” said the skipper, who turns 32 on Wednesday. “We didn’t want to waste Saturday after last week. Six points at Spurs and Southampton at home were two great results and fully deserved.
“I think we’ve made real progress with the way we’ve played this season, in a certain style. Even away to Spurs, we played a certain way.
“Don’t forget we missed Dec and Felipe on Saturday but Pedro came in and was fantastic and Grady came in who hasn’t played for a while and it’s been really good.
“It’s a shame it always seems to end when we’re playing so well. We just hope we can get the three points next week against Watford and finish on such a high.”
West Ham lost their opening four matches of the Premier League season as the team adapted to Manuel Pellegrini’s style of play, while defeats to teams around and below them in the table have ended hopes of a return to European football.
However, Noble still believes the Irons are definitely moving in the right direction.
“If we finish in the top half it would be a fantastic season,” said the No16, who identified wins at Tottenham and Everton and home to Manchester United as his favourite moments.
“We are only four or five points off where we wanted to be, but with no wins in the first four and we’ve probably been a little bit sloppy against the teams in the lower end of the league this year, but some of our performances, especially here [at London Stadium], have been fantastic.
“I’ve played another 30 games, most of the games, and had another good season, so I’m looking forward to the next one!”
Saturday’s win was highlighted by a return to goalscoring form for Marko Arnautovic, who appears to have put the distractions of the January transfer window behind him, much to his captain’s delight.
“I’ve been on him lately, on him hard, especially in training,” said Noble, who named Declan Rice and Lukasz Fabianski as his favourites to win Hammer of the Year. “The way he played against Spurs, especially in the second half, he’s back to the Marko we know and that’s what we fully expect.
“The fans here are not silly, they know that, and that’s why they gave him a round of applause on Saturday.”