Hammers must prove top six credentials – Pellegrini

West Ham United
Joint-chairmen David Sullivan and David Gold say Manuel Pellegrini is the perfect manager to oversee more progress at West Ham.

West Ham boss Manuel Pellegrini wants his squad to prove they are worthy of a top-six push against Manchester United.

The Hammers have been tipped to break into the top six this season after another summer of spending with Pellegrini at the helm.

But the likes of Everton, Leicester and Wolves have also been mentioned as potential candidates to force their way into Europe as some of the ‘big six’ seem to be faltering.

The Hammers have made a steady start to the term, claiming eight points from five games, and are unbeaten since losing to Manchester City on the opening day.

That loss is their only one in their last nine games, a run which stretches back to last season, and Pellegrini is hoping to keep that momentum going.

Sunday’s clash with Manchester United at the London Stadium is a big opportunity for West Ham to take some points from a top-six rival.

Pellegrini, who was drafted in to assemble a side capable of competing in Europe, insists he hasn’t set targets but hopes they can live up to expectations.

“I never say what our team target is for the season. I think though, that if pundits have those feelings, maybe it is because the team is showing in games, we are able to do that,” Pellegrini said.

“Our duty as a team is not to hear what happens, it is to play every game and demonstrate we are able to do it. We know we have a very strong team to play and we have a good test against Manchester United and we will try to beat them. That would be the only way to arrive in the top six position, by demonstrating in every game we can do exactly that.”