Sam Allardyce has admitted he wants to make sure Upton Park remains a difficult place to come for visiting sides in the Premier League next season.
The Hammers lost only four games at home in the Premier League last season, all of which were against teams that finished in the top-six, and pulled off battling results against Chelsea (3-1) and Manchester United (2-2) and Manchester City (0-0).
And Allardyce wants his side to get off to a great start against newly promoted Cardiff City on the opening day of the 2013/2014 season in order to send out a warning to the other top-flight sides, while also admitted he is looking for revenge against the side that beat him 1-0 at Upton Park on his first competitive match in charge of the Irons.
He told whufc.com: “I’m pleased that at least we are playing them at home and not away. It casts my mind back to the start of my career at West Ham and a 1-0 defeat to them in my first game and I want to make sure we don’t repeat that.
“The other games will be about us maintaining our home form and making people aware that when they come to West Ham they will be in for a tough afternoon because we play attacking football against the opposition and create chances.”
Big Sam also revealed that he will be challenging his players to achieve the same good start as they did last season.
“It will be important to challenge the players to try and achieve the same amount – 14 points from our first eight games – as they did last season,” he said.
“One thing we must do is ensure our away form improves,” Allardyce stressed.
“Our first away game is Newcastle United. Myself, Andy Carroll and Kevin Nolan are all ex-Newcastle and it will spur us on to get the first away points on the board as we did last year.”
You can see the full list of next season’s fixtures here.