West Ham’s ‘very important’ star could now push to leave this summer
Michail Antonio may now push to leave West Ham United over the summer transfer window. The striker is considering his future at London Stadium after eight seasons.
That is according to The Guardian, which reports that Antonio may look to leave West Ham despite having another year remaining on his contract. The 33-year-old last agreed to fresh terms in January 2022. His deal also features an option for the Irons to extend it until 2025.
But Antonio often found himself on the bubble of manager David Moyes’ plans this season. The forward only started in 21 of his 33 appearances in the Premier League and in six of his eight in the Europa Conference League. Yet he scored 11 goals and five assists in his games.
Antonio was not always West Ham’s #1 striker in 2022/23
Antonio ended the Premier League season as Moyes’ first-choice forward having started in nine of their final 11 fixtures. But he only offered two goals and one assist during that run. Those involvements came in late April against Bournemouth, Liverpool and Crystal Palace.
Before he struck at the Cherries, Antonio had only scored one goal through his previous 18 top-flight appearances. His underwhelming streak dated back to October 9 and further saw Gianluca Scamacca start to emerge as Moyes’ starting name until after the turn of the year.
A knee injury would open the door for Antonio to replace Scamacca later in January. While the Italian undergoing surgery on his knee in April to resolve the number of problems that had plagued his year also ensured Moyes had to rely on Antonio to see out the campaign.
Kehrer’s recent joy could come to an end with a transfer
Thilo Kehrer admired what Antonio offered West Ham during the run-in, despite him rarely boasting an end product. Slaven Bilic’s £7m signing from Nottingham Forest in September 2015 stood out to the German through the endless work rate he has consistently delivered.
The centre-half told the Irons’ official club website in May: “Michail is working like crazy upfront at the moment. He is putting the defenders under stress and every game he is doing a very important job. He is scoring goals, as well. So, we are really happy that we have him.”
But for how much longer West Ham have Antonio now remains to be seen with the striker considering pushing for a transfer. He has offered 75 goals and 43 assists in 275 games over his eight seasons in east London so far. While his endless work rate has often been crucial.
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