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It will be tough for West Ham, insists Ranieri

Filed: Thursday, 21st February 2019
By: Staff Writer

Fulham manager Claudio Ranieri says that his struggling side will make tomorrow night's Premier League clash very difficult for West Ham.

Although the Hammers go into the match as overwhelming favourites to secure a tenth league win of the current campaign, Ranieri insisted that his team have the ability to secure all three points.

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"In every training session there is a very good atmosphere and this gives me lots of confidence because you see the squad is alive," he said during Thursday's press conference.

"They want to do something more every match. Itís important for me to maintain their idea that anything is possible. I am confident that with the support of our fans we can do very good things.

"We are ready. We know itís a difficult moment for us but we must be positive and do everything we can to change the table. Itís a very tough match - but I think it will be tough also for West Ham."

And the under-pressure Fulham boss, whose team are currently eight points behind 17th-placed Cardiff City and consequently favourites for the drop pointed to this season's corresponding fixture as the reason for his optimism.

"In the first match against West Ham we played very, very well but they scored two goals on the counter attack," he recalled. "It was amazing because we shot at goal many times - but thatís football.

"It will be difficult because they have very good players. If I remember correctly they are on 33 points and they are safe [from the threat of relegation].

"But maybe weíll have one shot, score a goal and wonít concede. Why not?"

And despite West Ham's squad featuring what Ranieri referred to as a number of "match winners", he maintained that his team will be doing their best to produce a surprise result.

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"They started [the season] with difficulties which is normal when you change your manager, and also because at the beginning they played big teams," he said.

"When the matches were normal they started to play well and win. They have so many good players who can change the game and we must concentrate during all the match.

"So we have to fight. Every match is important for us as we fight to survive and I hope we can give a very good performance and, at the end, get points.

"For us itís important to show our strength. I want to see my players make their destiny with their hearts."

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