Diafra Sakho
Sakho featured in the last two games prior to the draw with Arsenal. Getty

West Ham United co-chairman David Gold has denied suggestions Diafra Sakho was dropped from the first team because he stormed out of training. Sakho, 26, had previously started the Hammers last two league games but was a surprise omission from the side that drew 3-3 with Arsenal at Upton Park on Saturday 9 April.

His absence came days after the player pulled out of a media event at the club's store at Lakeside shopping centre due to "unforeseen circumstances".

According to the Daily Mail, Sakho was told on Friday he would not be in the starting line-up against the Gunners, with the striker later leaving training early in protest. But when asked about the incident by a Hammers fan on Twitter, Gold attempted to diffuse the situation, claiming the player's absence down to illness and hopes to see him back in contention for Wednesday's FA Cup clash with Manchester United.

Hammers manager Slaven Bilic explained his post-match press conference the Senegal striker was carrying an injury.

"This is the team that I thought was the best team for today," he said. "He [Sakko] reported a minor injury."

West Ham didn't miss Sakho on Saturday with Andy Carroll scoring an eight-minute hat-trick to help his side come from two goals down to lead 3-2, before Laurent Koscielny rescued a point for the Gunners with 20 minutes of the contest remaining.

A point saw the Hammers move to within a point of fifth-placed Manchester United. The club's hopes of qualifying for next season's Champions League were dealt a blow however when Manchester City secured a late 2-1 win over West Brom later that afternoon, with the gap between them and fourth place now five points with six games of the season remaining.

Bilic's side welcome United to Upton Park on Wednesday 13 April for their FA Cup quarter-final replay.