Premier League

Moyes urges calm and reveals timely contract news for 8-goal forward

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All eyes will be on the London Stadium this evening as the Hammers take on Watford in a match that will have an enormous influence on the Premier League’s battle for survival.

Level on 34 points, if either side wins this evening, they will be just one point away from safety, while the other would be left three points above the relegation zone with two matches remaining.

Considering West Ham’s last remaining fixtures are against an in-form Champions League-chasing Manchester United and a final day visit from an Aston Villa side scrapping for safety, they must win this evening to ease the pressure on their final two matches.

Ahead of the clash, David Moyes spoke of how vital top-scorer Michail Antonio had been in recent weeks and revealed some exciting news regarding his contract.

What did he say?

Speaking to Sky Sports, Moyes said: “He’s got a year to go and, as far as I know, he has got a built-in extension, so I don’t think there is any real panic [concerning his future].”

The Scot added: “If we stay in the Premier League it will be because of the team’s performance, and I think it will be the attitude of all the players. The Players have been bang at it since January. We have been desperate to win all the games. The players have done a great job.

“We have needed to step up and score goals, and thankfully, Michail Antonio has come up to the mark and got some goals.”

Leading the charge

Antonio had appeared, somewhat peripheral earlier on in the campaign as he got off to a slow start, scoring once in his first 15 appearances this term. But when Sebastien Haller has been absent through injury, the Englishman has stepped up to the plate, and at present, his importance to this side cannot be understated. Antonio has missed just 12 minutes of action since the Premier League returned and fired in six goals to help earn the Hammers seven points.

Concern had been growing that the 30-year-old will be entering the final year of his current deal with the club next season, but fans will be pleased to hear that his manager is not concerned and indicated the club could be set to trigger an extension. He’s already enjoyed five years in East London, but given his recent form, Antonio looks set to stay beyond the six-year mark his contract initially suggested.

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