Low profile West Ham signing Darren Randolph enjoying life at club despite shaky start

Trevor Brooking Stand

He is probably the lowest profile of all West Ham United's eight summer signings so far, but Darren Randolph is feeling good despite a shaky start.

The Republic of Ireland 'keeper was the club's first signing of the summer window and arrived on a free transfer from Birmingham City, before Slaven Bilic was even appointed.

And Darren Randolph has been telling West Ham's official website how he has found life at the club since joining.

With the Hammers having a firmly ensconced number one with Spanish cult hero Adrian a real fans' favourite, Randloph would have accepted he was starting his career in east London very much as number two.

But he has already played twice in Europe for his new side against Andorran minnows Lusitanos and following Saturday's 0-0 friendly against Charlton has kept three clean sheets so far.

Some nervy kicking and indecision on crosses coming into his box has been noted by West Ham fans, though, and the 28-year-old was extremely lucky not to have bee at fault for two or three goals in the first half against Charlton.

He also instantly lost his place to Adrian for the Europa League second qualifying round when the former Real Betis 'keeper returned to training.

Right decision to join West Ham

But he showed character to bounce back with a string of fine saves in the second half against Charlton and insists he made the right decision joining the club.

“I’ve really enjoyed my time with the club so far," he told whufc.com.

"I played in the first round of the Europa League qualifiers and have played again in a few of the friendlies.

“I’m always looking to improve different aspects of my game and anything that comes above that is a bonus.”

It is easy to see why the Ireland stopper is loving life at the top.

From Welling to West Ham: 10 years of graft

Randolph has spent the last 10 years earning the right to move up the football pyramid from his non-league days on loan at Welling from Charlton.

He never quite made the grade for Charlton first team, though, and after five loan spells to various clubs he eventually joined Scottish side Motherwell.

It was there Randolph really earned his stripes, playing 111 games and even featuring in a Champions League qualifying defeat to Panathinaikos.

It earned him a return to English football where he joined Birmingham and played 91 games in two seasons as an ever present catching the eye of Hammers legend Phil Parkes who recommended him to the West Ham board.

If he can enjoy half the career Parkes had in east London he will have done very well indeed.

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