Dark clouds have started to gather around West Ham but the ray of sunshine that is Michail Antonio is trying to break through.
West Ham have been in freefall over the last two months.
Without a win in six ahead of Saturday’s tough trip to Burnley, the Hammers have dropped from third to 13th.
The team and squad is looking short in key areas as West Ham prepare for a daunting run of fixtures.
But looking to blast away the doom and gloom is the ever-positive bundle of energy that is attacking star Antonio.
Hammers have missed positive power of Antonio
Much of West Ham’s troubles can be charted directly to the loss of Antonio – and of course goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski.
Without Antonio West Ham lack raw power and pace.
He brings something a little bit different and an unpredictability to Manuel Pellegrini’s side.
After the forthcoming international break, the Hammers will have that back as the former non-league player returns from a tendon injury which has kept him out since August.
The team, Pellegrini and the board have been heavily criticised by fans and pundits alike of late.
Michail keeps it real amidst doom and gloom
But Antonio was keeping it real as he spoke to the club’s official website ahead of his anticipated return.
“I’m buzzing to be back out there training and hopefully I can get back in and help the boys move up the league,” he told whufc.com.
“In the Crystal Palace game we had lots of opportunities and their keeper pulled off some unbelievable saves. Sheffield United was similar – they had a couple of opportunities, but we had more and if they had hit the back of the net we’d have six points.
“That’s the difference, the ball’s not been hitting the back of the net. Right now, we just have to make sure we’re being ruthless and keep the ball out of our half.”
Ruthlessness in two games the difference between fifth and 13th
Sometimes it is easy to get carried away but the win and loss column and lose sight of the reality of performances.
And Antonio makes an excellent point.
With those extra points West Ham would be fifth right now and the mood and headlines around the East Londoners would be very different.
Had he been around perhaps they would have those points in the bag.
Now it is up to the team to make up lost ground, starting at Burnley today.