London – West Ham manager Slaven Bilic fears serious injuries to Dimitri Payet and Enner Valencia could derail his side’s impressive start to the Premier League season.
Hammers manager Bilic was left reeling after Payet and Valenica both suffered ankle problems in Saturday’s 1-1 draw against Everton at Upton Park.
Ecuador striker Valencia was stretchered off with a serious looking injury following an innocuous challenge from Seamus Coleman.
With West Ham making a surprise push for a coveted Champions League spot, those losses could potentially prove a damaging blow as Bilic awaits news of scan results.
“We have to wait about Payet and Valencia. It doesn’t look
“They are almost not always accurate. It’s better to have a scan and then see. The first one was a bad challenge and the second was a typical English tackle — ball and everything.
“It does not look good, but I’m hopeful and staying optimistic.”
West Ham led through Manuel Lanzini’s curling strike before Romelu Lukaku equalised just before half-time.
It was the Belgian’s seventh goal in as many games against West Ham as he joined former great Dixie Dean as the only Evertonian to score against the same opponent in that number of matches.
“We have to be happy with our start to the season. We need to use this international break to come back ever hungrier. I have told the players to be proud but to come back hungry,” Bilic said.
“We are going
Meanwhile, Roberto Martinez is optimistic his Everton side can challenge for a top-four finish.
The Toffees are seven points adrift, but Martinez says performances like Saturday’s will boost their chances.
Despite Lukaku snagging the headlines, it was John Stones who stole the show with a commanding man-of-the-match display that underlined why Chelsea
“It was a really interesting challenge for John as it wasn’t just about defending. It was about leading that back four,” he said.
“We had five players injured. John has to lead the defence — that’s where I was most impressed.
“I thought he was immense. It’s not an easy job having to defend against a striker like Andy Carroll.”