Michail Antonio is ahead of schedule and bullish about his return from injury at West Ham United.

Antonio suffered a hamstring tendon injury in the Carabao Cup game at Newport County.

The 29-year-old was initially ruled out until the new year.

But reliable West Ham insider ExWHUemployee claimed last week that Antonio could be back sooner than was first expected.

Photo by Arfa Griffiths West Ham United FC via Getty Images

Antonio ‘ahead of schedule’

ExWHUemployee was speaking during an appearance on The West Ham Way podcast, and delivered good news for Hammers fans.

And the player himself has been very upbeat about his comeback.

He recently sent a clear message to West Ham manager Manuel Pellegrini about where he wants to play on his return.

And that is on the right wing, currently occupied by in-form star Andriy Yarmolenko.

“It’s one thing that keeps me young, keeps me hungry and keeps me going, really, knowing that I’m always going to have to fight for my place,” Antonio told BBC Radio 5 Live.

Photo by Arfa Griffiths West Ham United FC via Getty Images

Antonio sends bullish messages to Manuel Pellegrini

“At the beginning of the season I was in, I was out, it was looking like I was going to be in the team, then I have done my hamstring. It would be boring if I played and then whenever I was fit I was available. I feel I’d get more lackadaisical, I wouldn’t thrive, I wouldn’t play so well as when I go back in because I need to play well and score goals to keep my shirt and that will keep me going in my career.

“I want to play on the right wing. Me and Yarmo love each other and I’m buzzing for him. He’s one of the nicest guys you’ll ever meet. He’s always happy and is a great guy. It’s one of those things where we’re always going to be fighting for a place and if it wasn’t him, it would be someone else.

“Before he got injured, he was scoring goals and doing what he is doing now. He had a massive injury, but he’s come back and picked up where he left off, basically.”

Photo by Avril Husband West Ham United FC via Getty Images

Quick healer not called ‘the beast’ for nothing

Then at the weekend quick healer Antonio posted on social media. And it proved he is much further down the road to recovery than anticipated.
“No stopping my recovery, giving it everything #BeastMoves,” Antonio posted on Twitter alongside a picture of him running up a sweat on a treadmill.
Clearly they don’t call Antonio ‘the beast’ for nothing.
His pace, power, running and enthusiasm was sorely missed in the draw at Bournemouth and particularly the defeat to Crystal Palace last time out.
His return to action can’t come quick enough but West Ham would be minded not to rush him back soon and potentially lose him for another large chunk of the season as we approach the quarter-way mark.
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