By Greg Stobart at Eastlands
West Ham United manager Avram Grant admitted it will be “very difficult” for the club to stay in the Premier League after their 2-1 defeat at Manchester City on Sunday.
The Hammers sit rock-bottom of the table with three games to play, including a crucial home clash against fellow strugglers Blackpool next weekend.
Grant insists his side will not give up but admits it is time to start taking points after five losses in as many league outings.
“It will be very difficult to stay in the league,” said the Israeli. “If we win the next game, the league will open up for us.
“I think we will need between seven to nine points. I thought teams around us would take more points because they've had home games.
“We need to take the points. There is not doubt about this. We can't do anything apart from take the points. It doesn't matter how we play.”
West Ham fell two down behind inside the first 15 minutes at Eastlands as Nigel de Jong put City ahead before Pablo Zabaleta doubled the advantage via a heavy touch from Lars Jacobsen.
Demba Ba fired home from close range to put the visitors back in the game and City were forced to cling on to their slender advantage in the closing stages.
Grant felt West Ham deserved at least a point from the game and felt his side showed enough spirit to offer encouragement ahead of the final three matches of the season.
He added: “I think you saw us play a very good team in their home and we deserved more. Everybody could see we deserved more.
“I think after a very bad start we had a great comeback and showed a lot of spirit and fight. There are a lot of positive things to take for the next game.
“It will be very difficult but we can do it.”