Diafra Sakho has stated West Ham must drop their habit of conceding late goals after once again seeing victory snatched away from them in the dying minutes against Tottenham on Sunday.
The Senegal international notched his first league goal since New Year’s Day in the London derby to give his side a two-goal lead following Cheikhou Kouyate’s earlier strike.
The 25-year-old was left frustrated at the end, though, as Danny Rose and, in the sixth minute of added time, Harry Kane completed an improbable Spurs revival.
“It's difficult to take, particularly because that's the second time [it's happened], against Manchester United as well it was the same. We lead until the last minute and then conceded. It's becoming a habit! Now it's for us to rid ourselves of it and manage the game, as a group, until the end,” Sakho told the official club website.
The Hammers have a tendency to sit back on leads with 20 minutes to go and it has cost them on numerous occasions. Against Everton, Man United, Swansea and now Spurs they have dropped points from good positions and it’s something the team needs to address.
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The result against Tottenham was the first time in Sam Allardyce’s reign that West Ham have dropped points from a 2-0 position and as a manager that prides himself on not giving away that kind of lead it will have been tough to take.
Hopefully, though, it will ensure he no longer employs this tactic of sitting on leads and instead instructs his team to be more controlled and careful in possession, running the clock down and frustrating the opponent rather than giving them encouragement.
Sakho believes they should still be proud of their performances despite the frustration of dropping points and it’s merely down to a lack of concentration, something that can be rectified in the coming matches.
“I think we lacked a bit of concentration at the end, but that can happen at any given moment. It's down to us to make sure it no longer happens, because as a result we've lost four points over the two games. And at the end of the season, all those points are important,” he added.
“I think that with the performance we produced on Sunday, even though we're frustrated to have drawn it, we can still reflect on a good game overall.”
The Hammers have another three successive clashes against London clubs and they will need to ensure they are at it for the full 90-plus minutes if they are to get back to winning ways.
Sakho certainly enjoyed his first taste of a London derby against Spurs and he is thriving at the prospect of getting on the score sheet in the ones to come.
He has nine goals in 17 Premier League appearances in his maiden season at the club, a phenomenal return, but he insists he wants to continue firing and help the side claim bragging rights in the upcoming derby matches.
“I'd not scored in the league [for some time] - I'd only scored in the cup. I hope as well that it's the start and that I'm going to score again in the derbies to come,” Sakho said.
“We know that all the games are important and we've got Palace on Saturday, when I'll be trying to score again. I hope come the end we'll have won the game.”
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