West Ham boss Alan Curbishley is ready to fast-track Dean Ashton's return if his strikers fail to fire.
"Dean needs games but not situations like this one when I have to put him on with half an hour to go and tell him to get on with it," observed Curbishley after their defeat to Manchester City on Saturday.
"We should give him more time but he is desperate to play and if we don't do better than that, he will be starting, that is for sure.
"The whole day was just a massive disappointment. I can't take any positives from it whatsoever and I am just as disappointment with myself as anybody.
"I should have done something about the shape of the side before City scored and when I did try to find a spark I ended up switching too many players around."