Date: 14th August 2018 at 7:24pm
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OPINION

Michail Antonio’s future in the first-team has come under threat after a number of summer signings but must continue to player in the West Ham attack.

The ex-Nottingham Forest ace played the full 90 minutes of West Ham’s thrashing from Liverpool and is relishing the competition for a starting spot in the first team.

Antonio stated to the club’s official website: “I managed to get a start for the first game of the season and you need those players behind you who will threaten your position because it makes you want to play better and fight to stay in the team.

The 28-year-old journeyman has played in almost every position possible on the pitch throughout his remarkable career and will be hopeful he can maintain his place as the leading man in the West Ham attack.

The Hammers’ opening day defeat to Liverpool did not go down well with the club’s supporters, with Antonio not getting a sniff of a goalscoring opportunity.

However, West Ham now face Bournemouth in their first home game of the season and the 5ft 9 attacker will be eyeing a first Premier League goal of the campaign against the Cherries. Last season was a disappointing year for Antonio, who struggled to find the net with three goals in 21 appearances after missing a number of games through a hamstring injury.

If the winger can stay away from the sidelines, there is hope he can re-find the form that saw the London-born pick up the Hammer of the Year award in 2017.

United have brought in strong attacking options this summer, with forward Lucas Perez accompanying midfielders Andriy Yarmolenko and Felipe Anderson through the doors of the London Stadium.

This season will be a challenge for Antonio but if he can get off the mark early on this season, it should place him in a good position to earn the outright spot up front.