‘Every game feels like an FA Cup final’ - Defeat piles pressure on Hammers before City clash

West Ham United goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski dives in vain as Burnley's Jay Rodriguez (not pictured)

West Ham United goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski dives in vain as Burnley's Jay Rodriguez (not pictured) scores the first goal of the game during the Premier League match at London Stadium Picture: Justin Setterfield/NMC Pool/PA Wire - Credit: PA

West Ham goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski is urging his team-mates to grasp their opportunity at Norwich on Saturday, after admitting the pressure of a relegation battle had been felt during defeat at Burnley.

The Hammers had beaten Chelsea 3-2 and drawn 2-2 at Newcastle to lift themselves four points clear of trouble but a 1-0 home loss to Burnley on Wednesday saw the revival of David Moyes’ team checked.

Jay Rodriguez headed the visitors in front in the 38th minute and keeper Nick Pope denied West Ham, including a fine stop-from substitute Sebastien Haller as the £45million striker returned from injury.

“Maybe we could have been a bit more patient and creative around the box,” said Fabianski. “But once we conceded it was in our minds that we had to equalise really quickly with something basic or simple and that didn’t happen and that put us under more pressure going into the second half, and we went even more direct when we had time to stick to the game plan.

“All the teams in this position have this in the back of their minds about getting away from the relegation zone and every single game feels like an FA Cup final where there are a lot of things at stake. That is always somewhere there in your mind, so you have to remain calmer in those situations and believe in your abilities, in your game plan and stay cool in tricky moments.

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“If you do that, you are able to put in really good performances.”

The Hammers head to Carrow Road on Saturday (12.30pm kick-off) knowing that victory will relegate the Canaries, following their 2-1 defeat at Watford on Tuesday.

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“We realise our situation and there is no point being negative and thinking today’s game was just bad luck,” the Polish keeper added, speaking to West Ham’s website. “When you put all the things together, we were unlucky when it came to taking some of our chances.

“There were some good moments, there were some bad moments, but we have to see Norwich as another great opportunity to get to a strong position in the table and further away from the bottom three, and that’s what we’ll try to do.”

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