West Ham boss Moyes: Silkeborg plastic pitch a new challenge

West Ham boss David Moyes says Silkeborg offer a different challenge for tonight’s Europa Conference League tie.

Kent Nielsen’s side finished third in the Superliga last season and play on an artificial surface at their neat, tidy 10,000-capacity JYSK Park stadium on the outskirts of the picturesque town in central Jutland.

Moyes said: “There are a lot of different ways to look at playing on an artificial surface.

“As a player, I played in a plastic pitch for about three years, so I’ve got a good idea of what and how you can play and there are different ways and different philosophies of how it should be done and how you look at it.

“But I have to say I think in modern football nowadays, I don’t see the top level players really want to play on artificial pitches. I totally respect it because I think for young players, for development, for younger age groups, with the weather conditions which we have [in northern countries], and I’m from Scotland, so I know very well which how much artificial pitches are so important, but I actually think when you get to top level football, we’re used to natural and we know that this will be different for us and we have to take this into consideration.

“We’re familiar with the surroundings because we stayed close by for our game with Viborg, so that’s made it a little bit easier.

“In truth, the travel to here has been very easy from London with a short flight, so all those things play a part, and you hope that you get good draws as far as travel goes as well.

“Last year, we had games [in Europe] which mainly kicked-off at six o’clock and now most of our games kick-off at eight o’clock, which is not good for us because it means our travel is affected differently and return times are different.

“But I think if you’re going to be a European team, you have to start getting used to it. We have to start finding out more about how we handle it.”