Tigers intend to give Hammers a big fight

AS East London prepares for an afternoon that has the potential to be a nervy and dramatic affair, Nick Barmby admits all the focus will be on West Ham United.

But that does not mean Hull City’s only role today is as potential party-pooper with the former England international instead insisting they have a full part to play in what could be a memorable finale to the Championship season.

Barmby said: “Our thoughts are just the same as any other game. We will be looking to win the game as much as West Ham.

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“I am not interested in spoiling anyone’s party, I am just interested in our performance and going there with a very positive attitude.

“I understand that West Ham have got to win the game and hope Southampton slip up but my only concern is with us.

“We want to sign off with a good away performance against a good side. That is all we are interested in.”

City travel to Upton Park sitting in eighth position with 68 points, an improvement of three places and three points on last season.

Depending on how results go this lunchtime, Hull could move up to seventh or fall to ninth.

For the Hammers, however, the stakes are much, much higher as Sam Allardyce’s side look to capture second place from Southampton.

Two points separate the two clubs but with West Ham having a goal difference that is three goals superior to the south coast club, a home draw at St Mary’s coupled with a win over Hull would be enough to see the Londoners snatch automatic promotion.

Barmby said: “I have told the players that it is a great challenge for us. It is a test of character and these are the games you want.

“I was pleased when West Ham beat Leicester (2-1 on Monday night to ensure the promotion race would go to the final day) because I wanted this game to be worth something so we can go there and show what we are about.

“I want to see courage and bravery on the ball and to see us take the game to West Ham.

“They are going to come out firing, we know that. But we have got to go there and dampen that down. The lads are really looking forward to the game.”

City have sold their full allocation of tickets for today’s game, which will be broadcast live on Sky.