Lampard: I don’t know if Everton’s trip to West Ham is a must-win

With Everton battling to escape the Premier League’s bottom three, Saturday’s game has been billed as must-win for Frank Lampard.

Frank Lampard has admitted he does not know whether he will lose his job as Everton manager if Saturday's trip to West Ham ends in defeat.

The Toffees have slipped into the Premier League relegation zone after a seven-game winless run that has seen them pick up just two points.

On Saturday, they face a Hammers side who sit just one place above them in 18th, and whose manager David Moyes is under just as much pressure as his Everton counterpart.

Consequently, the game has been billed in some quarters as a sack race decider, but Lampard played down the stakes in his pre-match press confernece.

Asked if it is a must-win for him on a personal level, he replied: “I don't know, I only have to prepare for the game.

"You say it's a big game for me, I played and managed in many, many big games with a lot of jeopardy. Whether one will get you into the Champions League the next year, whether one will keep you in the league, whether one will get you in the playoffs or not. These are all big games and they're all relative.

"I'm not making light of this but there are 17 more games to go after this game and I have to prepare for this game at the weekend. So I'm not thinking of the ifs and buts."

Members of Everton's board did not attend last weekend's defeat to Southampton at Goodison Park due to what was described as a 'real and credible threat to their safety' amid fan protests.

But Lampard insists he does not need his superiors to be present at the ground to feel their support.

He added: "I've been managing for a few years now and I think in terms of backing from your bosses, owners, boards, I don't think it's presence.

"I managed Chelsea for 18 months and I don't think the owner came to one game. It's more about how you work together and the backing you have, and it's a fact that everyone here wants the same things, wants Everton to win games.

"An Evertonian at Goodison or an Evertonian sitting at home - and there are so many of them around the world, I've learnt that in this last year. We all want the same thing."

The former England international also revealed that his conversations with the club's senior figures regarding Everton's perilous position have been frank.

He continued: "They are honest [conversations], I have to be honest because it's my job and my job is in the now.

"If I don't say my honest opinion now, then I wouldn't be doing my job right. I have to say it as I see it.

"The owners and the board have to work in the structure of what they can do and we have to speak about budgets, what we can do, where the squad's at, so they have to be honest."