Neil Howarth column: Let's hope lads are singing the right tune at West Ham
IT WILL be nice to go to Upton Park tonight on the back of our first League Two victory at Accrington Stanley on Saturday.
It's taken us to our fourth game to pick that win up and hopefully now we are up and running we can continue to pick up three points on a regular basis.
The preparation for the match was perfect as we were able to travel up to Accrington on Friday.
We trained at Burnley's training ground on the Friday afternoon and that place has been transformed since I used to paint it and clean it as an apprentice in the late 80s!
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The hotel was great so I would like to say a massive thanks to the chairman and his directors who make it possible for us to do things as professionally as possible.
The fact that we travelled over night also gave the new players an opportunity to express themselves with a microphone.
As is tradition at most football clubs the new players introduce themselves with a song of their choice after our evening meal. And while Terry Gornell and Matt Richards may have played their part in picking up three points on the Saturday, they certainly won't be giving any of the X-Factor judges anything to think about!
Obviously there are no points to play for on Tuesday but we are excited about the prospect of challenging ourselves against one of the best teams in the country.
West Ham is one of those football clubs that have an excellent tradition and many people can't help but want them to do well because of their history.
They have had some of the world's best players turn out for them over the years and Sam Allardyce guided them to a very secure mid-table finish on their return to the Premier League last season.
They have had a good start to their Premier League campaign this season and I'm sure Big Sam will be looking to kick on again this year.
It will certainly be an occasion for everyone associated with the club to enjoy, players and fans alike, and hopefully the lads will go onto the Upton Park turf and do themselves justice.
West Ham went up to Newcastle at the weekend and gained a very credible point. I'm pretty sure that Sam will use the opportunity to rotate his squad against us.
Many of the Premier League clubs have used this competition over the years as an opportunity to field some of their younger pros but whichever XI he puts out on the night they are sure to be full of quality.
It will be up to us to relax and enjoy ourselves but also ensure that we don't just turn up to make the numbers up.
Last season in this competition Bradford City showed that anything can happen. I'm certain that when they were playing against Arsenal, Wigan and Aston Villa last season the Bradford players never for a moment thought that they would end up at Wembley in the final.
The run they had in that competition I am sure only helped them to gain confidence in themselves and they ended up returning to Wembley for the play off final which they won convincingly.
The cup competitions for clubs like ourselves offers the opportunity to make some money and that is where the luck of the draw comes in.
In recent seasons we have been fortunate in that we have been paired with Tottenham and Everton and that experience for our players is invaluable. The players can hopefully draw on their recent experiences of playing against top flight opposition and do themselves proud.
While we are obviously going there as massive underdogs we have to have belief that we can put in a performance and if that happens we will be able to leave East London with our heads held high.