West Ham United boss Sam Allardyce on Mark Noble

Mark Noble

West Ham United manager Sam Allardyce comments on the return to fitness of midfielder Mark Noble.

West Ham United manager Sam Allardyce has suggested that Mark Noble may not be guaranteed a place in the starting line-up.

The midfielder had been on the sidelines with a calf injury that he picked up last month, but he has now fully recovered and has been training this week.

The Englishman is likely to be included in the Hammers’ matchday squad for the Premier League clash against Burnley away from home on Saturday.

However, Allardyce has hinted that 27-year-old Noble may not find it easy to get straight back into the first XI.

‘He's back in training this week so hopefully he'll be ready for the weekend’, the West Ham boss is quoted as saying by the club’s official website. ‘Having him back will be huge for us as he's been fantastic for us since my time here/

‘I don't know if it's a given (if Noble will come straight back into the line-up), but these are the decisions you have to make as a manager.

‘Sometimes you have to disappoint players for benefit of the team, you can't play everyone. My duty as manager is to make sure the strongest team possible plays against Burnley against on Saturday’.

West Ham have not fared too badly since Noble suffered the injury against Liverpool last month, as they narrowly lost to Manchester United at Old Trafford and got the better of Queens Park Rangers at home before the two-week international break.

However, Noble is an important player for the London club and his return will further enhance their chances of finishing in the top six of the Premier League this season.

Noble has scored one goal and has created eight chances in five league appearances, while having a pass accuracy of 87% and a shot accuracy of 67%.

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch