Diame facing 12-week lay-off
West Ham boss Sam Allardyce is fearful he could be without midfielder Mohamed Diame for up to 12 weeks after he suffered a hamstring injury in the 3-2 defeat to Liverpool.
Diame has been a key player for West Ham this season but was forced off after 73 minutes, with Liverpool scoring twice in the closing stages to take the three points. The Senegal international was stretchered from the pitch after pulling up near the touchline and Allardyce did not give a positive early prognosis.
"Not good, it does not take a medical expert to know it is a serious hamstring tear when he falls and stopped the way he did," he said. "I would expect, in medical terms, for it to be a grade 3 (injury) and that could be anything up to eight, 10 or 12 weeks."
With the likes of Alou Diarra, Ricardo Vaz Te, Jack Collison, Yossi Benayoun and Andy Carroll already out injured Diame's absence is a big loss to Allardyce.
"For us he is about the start and build-up of most of the creative side of our game - he runs at them (defenders) with pace and ability that puts them on the back foot," he said.
"That is what we have lost and what we will be missing for a number of weeks so we are going to have to be a bit more dogged and resilient with the players we have got available, rather than have the more creative side we have had from Mo."
Diame's performances for the Hammers have seen him linked with a number of clubs, especially given that he has a release clause in his contract, but Allardyce reckons he would rather deal with bids for his player in the transfer window than have him sidelined.
"I would sooner have that aggravation in January where people trying to get him than lose him for the period of time, eight-12 weeks," he said.
"In my experience, I have had a number of hamstring injuries myself in my time, when you go down like that you know you have really got (a bad) one.
"We will wait until it has settled down and then scan it, we will find out exactly how big the damage is and move on from there."