By Andy Hampson, PA
West Ham boss David Moyes admits his side could still be distracted by their Europa League heroics as they take on Burnley this weekend.
The Hammers memorably claimed a place in the semi-finals of the European competition with a stunning 3-0 win over Lyon at the Groupama Stadium on Thursday.
They now have a last-four clash with Eintracht Frankfurt to look forward to but Moyes is determined to make sure feet remain on the ground.
— West Ham United (@WestHam) April 14, 2022
They return to domestic action as the managerless, relegation-threatened Clarets visit the London Stadium on Sunday and Moyes wants full focus on the Premier League fixture.
The Scot said: “There is potential (for distraction) but we plan (for it) not to if we can. We will get focused on the next game.
“The league is really important for us and we have to try to hang in there in the European places if we can.
“Whatever way you deal with the European games, you have to deal with it. The big clubs do and get results, so we will do the same.
“We’ve done pretty well this year considering the Thursday-Sunday games, which is not an ideal situation. Hopefully we can prepare as well as we possibly can.”
West Ham had travelled to France in hope after a 1-1 draw in the first leg of their quarter-final last week.
They delivered on that as goals from Craig Dawson, Declan Rice and Jarrod Bowen in a 10-minute spell either side of half-time saw them claim a famous victory.
With his side sixth in the Premier League and pushing for European qualification again, Moyes hopes Thursday’s experience will have whet his players’ appetite for more.
He said: “We want to use the highs for the players to recognise just how good it can be.
What this squad is all about. TOGETHER. 💪⚒ pic.twitter.com/MTUdKjcjzl
— West Ham United (@WestHam) April 15, 2022
“We want to be in this place. We want them to be positive and confident with our actions on the pitch.
“We want to take it into the game on Sunday, take the confidence we got from the game, and we want to try and play as well as we did last night.
“All those things, hopefully, the players will use to their advantage.”
Moyes will prepare his players to face a Burnley side who are without a manager following the unexpected sacking of Sean Dyche on Friday.
Dyche had built a fine reputation over the course of more than nine years at Turf Moor but has paid the price for this season’s poor results.
The Clarets are in deep trouble, four points from safety with just eight games remaining, but Moyes was still surprised at the news.
He said: “I’m shocked, a little bit surprised as well. Maybe a wee bit at the timing but I’m more shocked because I think Sean’s done such a great job.
“He’s established Burnley over many years, kept them in the Premier League when he was probably up against it, with a lack of budget compared to other clubs in the Premier League.
“Over recent times Burnley have been a really good, hard team to play against, difficult place to go as all managers will tell you. Most of that’s been been done by Sean.”