West Ham United defender Gabriel Ogbonna says that their late 1-0 victory over a struggling Sunderland side was a very important victory for Slaven Bilic's men.
A important result
Things looked to be on the up for the Hammers after a poor start to the campaign, and they were looking for back-to-back league victories for the first time this season when they welcomed David Moyes' side to the London Stadium.
The Hammers dominated proceedings, but looked like they would have to settle for their second consecutive draw on home turf. But a late goal from Winston Reid changed that to ensure victory, and Ogbonna talked about the importance of the three points.
“The atmosphere is good in the changing room, and it always has been,” Ogbonna told whufc.com when asked about the mood in the camp. “We knew that we had to get back [to winning] so Saturday was an important result.”
He continued: “It was really hard to get back, because Sunderland wanted to move away from the bottom of the league and it was an important win.”
Ogbonna added: “If we keep this level of performance it will be good for us. Step-by-step, the Premier League is a really tough league, so we have to be focused.”
Friendships put aside
West Ham will be looking to keep the momentum going in mid-week, when they welcome London rivals Chelsea to Stratford in the League Cup.
Ogbonna will reunite with his former manager Antonio Conte in Wednesday's clash, but the Italian international insisted that friendships will be put aside ahead of their clash.
“I am looking forward to playing Chelsea on Wednesday,” he said. "We are playing in front of our fans, so the expectation will be high and we will prepare well.”
Ogbonna added: “I have a really good relationship with Antonio Conte, but this is football and I will put that to one side on Wednesday.”