Grant Ban Won’t Hurt Hammers


West Ham manager Avram Grant is adamant his absence from the touchline will not affect his side’s chances at Bolton on Saturday.Grant was handed a two-match touchline ban and fined 6,000 pounds by the Football Association for his comments about referee Mike Jones after his team?s 2-1 FA Cup defeat at Stoke on March 13.

And the manager will serve the first of those when West Ham travel to the Reebok Stadium this weekend to take on a side that has beaten the East London club seven times in a row.

But Grant insists the club is well prepared to cope without him in the dug-out.

“It’s not such a problem because I am in contact with the staff,” Grant said. “I have good staff and the people on the bench know exactly what they have to do.”

“I don?t like the ban and I don?t agree with it. I think it?s wrong for the FA to charge me but this is life. Not everyone is right about what they?re doing but I?ll continue with it.”

“I don’t think even one manager will speak honestly in front of the camera knowing that he might be charged. I have spoken with managers and most of them have decided not to do it.”

On his side’s woeful record against Bolton, the former-Chelsea manager added: “I think it?s a challenge but the game will start at 0-0 and we will go to the game to pick up the points.”

“We have no easy games from here until the end of the season and it?s not easy especially against Bolton.”

“They are a good team but we’ve also shown that we are not easy to beat. They’re playing at home and will try to get a good result. We are focused on us and not them.”

Scott Parker has been named on the shortlist for the PFA Player of the Year and Grant had no doubt his captain would be a worthy winner.

“Absolutely. There is no doubt given what he has done for this team,” he said.

“If you look at the second half of the season we have played well. But we had a difficult first half of the season and Parker was still playing very well and scoring goals.”

Fellow midfielder Jack Collison is nearing his return from a long-term knee injury but will miss this clash, while forward Junior Stanislas is still unavailable after his hernia surgery.

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