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West Ham United look to be evolving in to a genuine Premier League force under Manuel Pellegrini.

December saw the Hammers set a new club record for the number of points won in a month.

Five wins from seven matches was the most in a single month in their Premier League history.

West Ham are firmly in the hunt for a top seven spot and European qualification.

The year ended on something of a sour note, though, when Pellegrini’s side suffered a dismal 2-0 defeat away to bottom side Burnley.

But West Ham fans fear not.

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Sherwood backs West Ham push

Because much-maligned pundit and former Tottenham Hotspur manager Tim Sherwood believes this is just the start for the Hammers.

Speaking as a guest on Sky Sports’ The Debate Sherwood has fired an ominous warning to West Ham’s Premier League rivals by backing them for an even better second half of the season.

“I think they can be (the best of the rest) and after 19 games I think they’ll say they are disappointed by their return,” Sherwood told The Debate.

“They’ve signed some top players but they’ve been really unlucky with injuries, good players (they are missing too, like Manuel) Lanzini is a massive player for them, one of their prominent players over the last few years, Jack Wilshere who we know how good he is you know you can go on, there’s no end of injuries there.

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‘I see them having a really good second half to the season’

“They’ll get (some) of them back in the second half of the season so I think they’ll have a better second half than what they’ve had now.

“They’ve got a top manager, been at top clubs, won things and he’s been given the money. There’s no shortage of players coming to that club it’s just up to the manager now to get the best out of them, integrate them all together and it’s onwards and upwards for West Ham.

“I see them having a really good second half to the season.”

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Refreshing praise shows how far West Ham have come

It is refreshing to hear such positivity about West Ham’s prospects from pundits with no connection to the club.

Sherwood is often a figure of fun among football fans.

But anyone who listens to him speak on the game can see his passion and knowledge runs deep.

West Ham are in a battle with the likes of Everton, Watford, Leicester and Wolves to qualify for the Europa League.

Hammers fans will be desperately hoping Sherwood – a Premier League winner no less – is right.

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