Manuel Pellegrini waited for the ideal time to throw Andriy Yarmolenko into first-team action from the start – and his timing couldn’t have been better.
After Michail Antonio toiled out wide on the right for the opening weeks of the season, the Ukrainian international was called upon for the trip to Everton last Sunday.
The game was already a vital one because of the Hammers’ start to the season and Yarmolenko delivered the goods; two goals to seal three badly-needed points.
Yarmolenko has been speaking to the club’s official website as West Ham prepare to host Chelsea this weekend, and his comments prove what a team player he is.
In his own words
Yarmolenko said: “We played well at Everton. We played like a team, both in defence and attack, and we are very happy for our first win in the Premier League.
“I’m very happy for my team winning. Who scores the goals, I don’t care. We worked hard this week because we had to change around the results and we had to show our fans that we will fight for this club.”
Sunday’s victory proved the unity that will be required if the Hammers are to put a run of results together and move towards the upper reaches of the table.
West Ham must stay United
Yarmolenko’s comments reveal a selfnessness and work ethic that will endear him to the fanbase as much as his goals can.
The importance of fighting; to show the fans that the players are behind Manuel Pellegrini and realise it will take hard work to get to where the club wants to go – is so high.
Yarmolenko seems to get it. He has a tough test on the horizon against Marcos Alonso on Sunday, but if he is up for the fight, he can cause Chelsea problems.