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James Bolton Pre West Ham United

5 January 2018

Bolts looks ahead to West Ham clash

Shrewsbury Town defender James Bolton believes that Sunday’s game against West Ham could be the biggest of his career so far.

12 months ago James was readying himself for a game against Solihull Moors in the National League, today he is preparing to face former three time FA Cup winners in the form of West Ham.

It’s been a huge rise for Bolton, who has excelled at League One level this season, and he is relishing the occasion.

“It’s a massive occasion for the players and the club and I’m just looking forward for Sunday to come”, James told ShrewsWeb.

“You’ve just got to look at the teams I played last year and now I’m playing West Ham. It’s really good and I’m relishing the occasion.

“I was on the bench for Macclesfield at Hillsborough in the third or fourth round, but nothing as big as West Ham and a Premiership club.

“Without a shadow of doubt this will be the biggest club I have played against and I’m just looking forward to the occasion and to test myself against Premiership players.”

Town have already exceeded everyone’s expectations this season and James is hopeful that they can do it again on Sunday.

“Nobody is really expecting us to win”, admitted Bolton.

“People that have watched us know that on our day we could maybe cause an upset but it’s going to be a tough ask and we’ve got to be at our very best.

“We’ve played some big teams this season like Blackburn and Wigan, so we are capable of it. We are going to need a lot of luck that goes without saying, but it’s the FA Cup and anything can happen.

“All we can do is do our best and just hope it’s enough to beat them. It would be nice to cause the upset, but just being there and having the occasion will be nice for everyone.”

West Ham’s recent fixture schedule, which has seen them play Tottenham and West Brom in the last few days could mean that David Moyes rests a few players, but Bolton is expecting a tough afternoon no matter what.

“You don’t play in the Premiership and be an average player - you are a special player”, said James.

“Whatever 11 they put out is going to be really good and it’s going to test us, so we’ve just got to be at our best. I don’t think you should look into it too much and worry about what’s going to be in front of you. You’ve just got to enjoy it and think of it as a challenge.”

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