Grant inherited 'second-tier side'

Image: Gold: Signs of progress

David Gold believes that West Ham boss Avram Grant inherited a 'Championship side'.

Hammers co-chairman dismisses reports of Spector exit

Co-chairman David Gold believes that West Ham's struggles at the start of this season must be measured against the fact that Avram Grant inherited a 'Championship side'. The Hammers narrowly avoided Premier League relegation at the end of the last campaign under former boss Gianfranco Zola after finishing only one place above the drop zone with 35 points. Despite only Reading (36) in 2007/08 and Sheffield United (38) in 2006/07 finishing with higher points tallies since West Ham were demoted in 2002/03 with 42 points, Gold believes his club were fortunate to avoid relegation. And in the wake of last weekend's Premier League win over fellow strugglers Wigan and Tuesday night's Carling Cup hammering of Manchester United, he thinks there are signs that the Upton Park outfit can climb away from the foot of the table. Gold told Sky Sports News: "It has to be remembered that, basically, Avram did inherit a Championship side because with the 35 points that we got last season that would normally get you relegated. "Nine out of 10 times, 35 points would get you relegated. So in actual fact he inherited a Championship side. "So it has been difficult for him. He is building, he is re-gilding and slowly you can see, with six players brought into the team last night (against Manchester United), the strength of the squad and things are starting to come together.

Target

"It is only two victories, but it does give ourselves hope that we can get off the bottom of the table. "That is our next target and once we have done that it is of course to get out of the bottom three." Jonathan Spector scored twice against former club Manchester United on a rare first-team outing for the American. There have been reports that Spector could move to Germany in the January transfer window. But Gold insists that is not the case, saying: "I don't know where those rumours have come from, absolutely no idea where that has come from." Regarding the possibility of West Ham signing new players in the winter, Gold added: "Avram will talk to us and we will see what options are available. He will no doubt tell us where he believes we need to strengthen. "But you can see after last night's performance that we have the nucleus of a great squad."

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