David Moyes: Targeting the FA Cup and building confidence
David Moyes has admitted that he would love to win the FA Cup as West Ham United manager as he prepares for Sunday’s third round tie at Gillingham.
The Hammers head to Kent to take on the League One side, having defeated AFC Bournemouth in Moyes’s first game back in charge of the east Londoners.
The boss is keen to build on that momentum by approaching Sunday’s tie with the same focus and determination which saw them ease past the Cherries.
The FA Cup is very important…
I want to do as well as I can in the FA Cup but I’m probably no different from all the other managers who would like to win the FA Cup. I definitely would, and I know it’s really important here at West Ham to be competing in it.
My intention is to compete with the best I can. We’ll go into it and give it a go. It’s a tough game at Gillingham and we have to try and handle that.
For me, the FA Cup is joint equal with making sure we’re as high up the Premier League as we can. We need to do everything we can to get through in the Cup
You have to remember it’s not just me with that feeling. I can tell of another ten or 15 managers in the Premier League that will have that thought. Then there will be many managers in the Championship who hope for a draw that could get them through to the quarter-finals or semi-finals, and hope they can do something special.
I think every team is desperate to get through and lower teams, with respect to Gillingham, are looking forward to getting the games. Big games, big paydays, but from our point of view, we’re trying to win the FA Cup if we can.
Using Bournemouth as a catalyst...
It was a really good performance by the players. I think their mood has been really good since I came in. It can often happen when a new manager comes in, but I think that what you want is them to show it in their performance, and they’ve certainly done that. I think we gave the crowd something to shout about and they certainly made me smile. It was very good.
You hope it’s a catalyst. I think that the players will be looking at it thinking, ‘well, if we can do that and play like that more often, it’ll get us moving up the table.’ I think winning convincingly, with good goals as well, gave us a confidence boost. Keeping a clean sheet has been really important, we want to stop conceding goals. From that point of view I would hope that the players have taken a lot from it. It’s the first game of many. It was a good start though.
Making the team more solid…
On Wednesday I wanted to try and make sure we were compact, and we were a little bit harder to play against than we have been at London Stadium. I felt, from watching the games back, if we were a bit more solid then it would give us a starting point.
I thought we played very good football, but I also thought we did it from a really well-structured base.
I said after the game that we only really had one day of input with the players at all, so that’s why I have to give great credit to them for how it turned out and how they took things on board very quickly.
I have to say, we didn’t have time to do any set-pieces or work on many other major factors. I wanted to give all the praise and credit to the players. They’ve got that in them, and I do think many of them showed what they’re capable of.
Facing an old pal this weekend…
I saw the draw before I had the job and I thought it was a great draw for Gillingham. It’s a big club coming [to them from] down the road, not too far away. It’s good for the West Ham supporters as well, because it’s not a long distance to travel.
I think Gillingham and Steve would be delighted with the draw. Now that I’m here, I’m saying it’s a tough game. It’ll not be easy but I hope, with the quality and the players we have here, we’ll be able to get ourselves through.
Steve was a player at Celtic Boys club like me. I think Steve was in the slightly older group than me, although he might not look older! We go back to that time and we played against each other at different times. He used to come over a lot when he was at Rotherham and I was at Man Utd so we’ve come up and been at a few dinners together. At the level he manages at, he’s done a brilliant job everywhere he’s been. He’s got Gillingham competing this year at the top end of the league.