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Antonio has more targets starting at Villa

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Moyes and Antonio

Michail Antonio may be approaching the twilight of his career but he still knows exactly what he has to offer when stepping onto the pitch.

He has come a long long way from the days when Slaven Bilic tipped him to become the best right back in the Premier League.

He has been an amazing servant since arriving at the club from Nottingham Forest on deadline day in 2015 and has now been rewarded with a new deal.

His progress from the non leagues is very well known before arriving in the top flight at the age of 25 an Upton Park.

When he looks back on his eight-plus seasons at the Club, the No9 is naturally filled with a sense of pride and achievement.
Now as he prepares for Villa this afternoon he has spoken of his time at the club which has seen him – in come terms become a legend in Claret and Blue.
He told www.whufc.com: “I obviously didn’t set out to be a striker, I obviously didn’t set out to be here for nine years.
So  it’s just one of the things that I kind of came here to try to set my ground in the Premier League and try and show what I can do and just to show my class. It’s s been a crazy rollercoaster ride for me over the last nine years being here!

“It’s been weird because every single year I’ve had to prove myself again. Different managers come in, or the manager who had been here the year before was looking to bring someone in because I’m not the prettiest footballer. I know who I am, so I understand that.

“Every time someone comes in, they want to bring in someone who is a better tactician or someone else who looks better but, at the end of the day, when I step on the field, I know what I bring.

I know what I can do and, at the end of the day, every manager who sees the positives that I can bring to the team and every manager starts using me.”

“I feel that if I’m not scoring goals, I’m assisting goals, and if I’m not assisting goals, I’m helping create space for other players

“It is the all-round package. I might not get 20 goals a season, but I might get ten goals and seven assists. I might not be scoring goals, but I’m bringing other players into into the game, so it is the package that I bring and it’s what people are struggling to find right now.

“He [David Moyes] picks me because obviously I do the job at the end of the day and he always believes that and as a manager he needs players like me who are going to go out there and do the job.

“The fans see that every time I’m out on the field, I give 100%. I’ll give my all. Sometimes I might not have the best games but one thing they can guarantee me is that I’m giving 100%.”

Antonio will turn 34 in March but he is not willing to give up his place leading the West Ham forward line just yet.

With 77 goals for the Club to his name, he could reach 100 before he hangs up his boots, while he needs just five more assists to break Mark Noble’s Premier League record of 35 – and that is the next target on his list!

“I feel like there is definitely a good legacy that I’ll leave,” he concluded. “Obviously, I’ve got a lot of accolades for the Club.

I was one of the last people to score at the Boleyn Ground [against Manchester United in May 2016] and was also the first person to score at the London Stadium in the Premier League [against AFC Bournemouth in 2016].

I was the first player to score four goals in the Premier League [against Norwich City in July 2020]. I’ve got a list!

“The only one I’m going for right now is to beat Mark Noble for the most assists.

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Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!"

Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon

0 comments

  • Hammers in the blood 1 says:

    He’s right he does a job , some good days some bad . No matter he works hard for the team . Listen we need to start kudus , with regular starts , he brings pace , skill & class . He could make the difference in any game . It’s a team game ! COYI ⚒

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