Michail Antonio seems to be a very promising winger; I wish I could say he is a promising player, however we have not seen enough of the English wide midfielder.
The former Nottingham Forest player arrived at West Ham on deadline day and appeared to be a very good signing. Fans supporting Championship clubs commented on the fact that it was a bargain, and that he was a good player. The winger scored 14 goals last season, when you consider he doesn’t play as a striker that is pretty impressive.
Why has he not been played yet? I am aware he came on as a substitute against Manchester City, however you would have thought Slaven Bilic might have given him more of an opportunity.
Of course, Antonio is inexperienced in the Premier league and does need to be eased into life in the top tier of English football. As a West Ham fan, I would have liked to have seen the new transfer start in the Chelsea game. I understand that Zarate replaced Victor Moses and played very well, although playing Antonio in this game would have given him great confidence.
West Ham did impressively beat Chelsea, however as Antonio is more suited to wing play than Mauro Zarate, why did Antonio not start? It is slightly frustrating that in some games, the English winger has not even made the bench, when numerous media outlets have confirmed he is not injured.
I can understand that Bilic might not want to start him, yet when the winger has not even made the substitutes bench, and he is fit, I question what may have occurred. Perhaps he has had a disagreement with the manager, because at this point in time, I view it as the only logical reason as to why Antonio has only played 30 minutes of football in a West Ham shirt.
Furthermore, it is not as if the winger is a one trick pony. Michail Antonio is very quick but also possesses great strength, a Nottingham forest fan said and I quote “West Ham have signed a great player who finishes like a striker.” I think all West Ham fans would understand Bilic’s reluctance to play Antonio if he was just fast but lacked end product.
Michail Antonio does have an end product and that is not particularly common for wingers in the modern game. I can only hope that Antonio is given a chance to illustrate his abilities soon, because in my view Bilic isn’t weakening the team if he starts Antonio.
Let’s not forget that he did cost the club roughly £7 million, I know the new TV deals provide clubs with more money, but that is a substantial fee nevertheless. Talented English wingers are hard to come by, yet I think West Ham might have one on their books. I really hope we don’t let this potential star waste away like Matt Jarvis did.
In summary, West Ham should give more game time to Michail Antonio because he has the potential to be a great player who will contribute goals and assists to the team. Antonio has already delivered on his potential, as both a West Ham fan and a football fan I hope he gets given a chance because he could be an essential asset to England and West Ham in the future.
Victor Moses is only on loan at the club, why not make the permanent signing which is Antonio a permanent fixture in the team?