West Ham and England legend convinced West Ham will stay up

World Cup winner Martin Peters thinks that the Hammers can survive the dreaded drop this season.

West Ham legend and World Cup winner Martin Peters is convinced that the Hammers will avoid the drop this season, despite sitting second from bottom with just five games to go.

The 67-year-old Plaistow-born star, who scored one of England’s winning goals in the 1966 World Cup Final, is a regular visitor to Upton Park and he thinks that three wins will be enough for survival.

“I think they have got to beat Blackburn and Sunderland at home,” Peters told the Recorder this week.

“Obviously Wigan are in there as well, though they had a great win at Blackpool at the weekend.

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“It will be tough to get anything out of Chelsea and Manchester City, but the other three games are the ones they need to win.”

Peters works at Upton Park on most matchdays and he has seen the ups and mainly downs of the season, none more than Saturday’s defeat by Aston Villa.

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“It was so disappointing that they could not hold on for that point on Saturday against Aston Villa,” he lamented. “I think that one point could have meant so much.

“They also lost two more players – Da Costa limped off and O’Neil got carried off – so I think that disrupted the team.”

Another disruption was the absence of Scott Parker and fellow midfielder Peters is only too aware of the influence he has on the team.

“Scott Parker is a very, very good player,” said Peters. “The team tends to revolve around him because he supports the back four and he supports the front two or three.

“He was a big loss, but I understand he is not going to be around for the Chelsea game, but he should be back for the game after that.”

Peters himself suffered his one and only relegation in a short stint as manager of Sheffield United back in 1981, so he is well aware of the problems that Avram Grant has faced this season.

“A lot of things have changed. The manager has come in and a lot of things have gone on,” said Peters.

“Thomas Hitzlsperger has come in now and played very well, but for three quarters of the season he wasn’t available which had a big effect.”

So does Peters think the Hammers will survive? “Yes, I think they will,” he insisted. “They may sneak a point at Chelsea or Manchester City, you never know, but if they can win the other three, and I think they are capable of that, then they will stay up.”

If a World Cup winner and Hammers legend says that, then you have to believe him!

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