English Premiership

Bilic warns against complacency

2015-10-01 14:26
Slaven Bilic (Getty Images)

London - High-flying West Ham United's wins at Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester City will "mean absolutely nothing" when they travel to Sunderland on Saturday, said manager Slaven Bilic.

The Hammers have made an impressive start to the Premier League campaign and are third in the table with 13 points from seven games. Bilic's side are also joint top scorers with Leicester City on 15 goals.

West Ham have beaten three of last season's top six on their travels and now hope to make it four away victories in a row, a feat they have never achieved in the Premier League.

Sunderland are rock bottom and searching for their first league win of the season but Bilic warned his players not to be complacent.

"Those three away wins mean absolutely nothing for Saturday because if we begin to think it will be easier against Sunderland then we need to stop that," the Croat told a news conference on Thursday.

"We are confident but we are expecting a tough, tough game. Neutrals are expecting us to win the game but we have to be fully aware in our approach.

"We've watched their games and in some of them they've been very unlucky. Up front they have some good individuals with pace," he added.

Bilic said striker Enner Valencia would return to training for the first time since injuring his knee and ankle in a Europa League qualifier in July.

"Enner will join us in parts of training today. It is massive news for us that he is getting closer," the West Ham manager explained.

"If everything goes well it's a matter of two or three weeks for him."

Defender Angelo Ogbonna is ruled out on Saturday as he continues to recover from the hamstring injury he picked up in the 2-0 win over Newcastle United on Sept. 14. Striker Andy Carroll and defender Winston Reid are also doubtful.

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