David Moyes has spoken of his desperation to deliver a final at Wembley for West Ham’s fans following their disappointing start to the season, but admits he will face a balancing act should his side reach the latter stages of the FA Cup.
The Hammers beat Brentford 1-0 in Saturday’s third-round tie, thanks to a late winner from substitute and former Bees man Said Benrahma.
The win was West Ham’s first since a dead-rubber success over Romanian outfit FCSB in the Europa Conference League in November, with Moyes’s men having struggled in the Premier League, only halting a run of five successive defeats with last week’s draw at Leeds.
The Hammers, who were on Sunday handed a trip to in-form Derby in the fourth round, remain outside the relegation zone only on goal difference and, while Moyes is determined to go deep in the Cup, the Scot concedes priorities may lie elsewhere.
“If you asked every Premier League manager, they know their bread and butter is the Premier League,” Moyes said. “Would I want to win a cup? Yes. Would all the other managers want to win a cup? Yes, one hundred per cent. But only one of us can win it.
“It’s not for me to go into the financial ramifications, but one place up the Premier League gets you more than what you get for winning the FA Cup.”
Last season, each place in the Premier League was worth around £2.2million. The winners of this season’s FA Cup will net £2m in prize money, though cumulative earnings mean a side starting in the third round would earn £3.9m in total by winning the competition.
Moyes added: “Look, I’d do anything to be able to get the West Ham supporters to a final at Wembley. Somewhere along the line, there will be decisions you have to make.”
Moyes made only four changes to his line-up for the trip to Brentford, which included playing the likes of Declan Rice, Lucas Paqueta and Jarrod Bowen from the start. Rice has played every minute in the League so far this term and started all five of England’s games at the World Cup, but Moyes felt he could not afford to rest his captain.
“I’d have loved to have thought we could have wrapped Declan up, but he’s such a huge influence,” he explained. “I’d like to win the FA Cup, and for me to have the best chance of doing that, I probably need to play Declan Rice.”