West Ham boss David Moyes has revealed he is hopeful of having Michail Antonio available to face Southampton this weekend.
Antonio was missing as West Ham crashed out of the Carabao Cup following a 2-1 defeat to Tottenham, after he tested positive for COVID-19 last week.
Jarred Bowen got the nod up front and scored with a fine individual effort, but the presence of Antonio was certainly missed as they chased the game having fallen behind twice.
The Jamaica international has been in isolation and while Moyes said in his press conference that the COVID-19 situation is under control at the London Stadium, there is no guarantee Antonio will be available.
“[Michail] Antonio tested positive last week, probably about a week ago now so we’re closer to getting him back but obviously not available tonight [against Tottenham],” he said.
“With testing every day there’s uncertainty like every other team but I have to say, at the moment we’ve been pretty good with Covid.
“The answer is I don’t know. He has no symptoms and I have to say that he is double vaccinated. For all those things hopefully we might have him back, yes.”
While Antonio’s form hasn’t been the greatest in recent weeks, his absence is still a big blow to the Hammers.
The 31-year-old is one of the best in the league at running the channels, while his athleticism brings a whole new level to the West Ham attacking dimension.
With the festive period of fixtures upon us, the manager needs as many options as possible to start picking up points again while the opportunity to finish in the top four is still there.
Antonio has been known for going on hot streaks of form and it only takes one to get him on a roll.
When the club take on his former club Southampton this weekend, his speed and power will be a great tool to use against one of the weaker defences in the league.
Hammers fans should have everything crossed to have their number 9 available this weekend.
In other West Ham news, club ace tells fans to lay off him with criticism over recent form.
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