Mark Noble today hailed West Ham’s 2-1 win over Millwall as a pivotal match in the race for the Championship title.
West Ham moved four points clear of second-placed Southampton despite playing with 10 men for 81 minutes following skipper Kevin Nolan’s red card for a tackle on Jack Smith.
Noble said: “After losing our captain we knew it was going to be tough but everyone seemed at their best and the commitment was terrific.”
Manager Sam Allardyce, who said the victory was one of the best of his career, claimed that Nolan’s dismissal was harsh and Noble said: “I was pretty close to it and it was a 50-50 challenge. Their player made a lot of it.
“When it’s nine minutes in and the ball is rolling between two players, you have to go for it.”
Julien Faubert appeared to foul keeper David Forde before Winston Reid’s winner.
He said: “Maybe it was a foul but the manager had told me to put pressure on him so I tried to do it.”