Pedro Obiang ready to give Slaven Bilic a midfield headache at West Ham

West Ham Dugout

One of West Ham United's big summer signings Pedro Obiang says he is ready to make his Premier League debut after returning from a pre-season injury.

The Spanish Under 21 international was the first signing after Slaven Bilic's appointment back in June when West Ham landed him from Italian side Sampdoria and he has told the club's website that he is ready to make an impact.

But the 6ft 1in box-to-box midfielder has been restricted to just one appearance so far at Peterborough in pre-season due to a persistent leg injury.

Obiang, who played 132 games for Sampdoria after leaving Atletico Madrid as a youngster, will bolster Bilic's midfield options as they prepare for Saturday's clash with Leicester City at Upton Park.

And the pass-master has told West Ham's official website he is hoping to give his new boss a selection headache, although he concedes the brilliant opening day 2-0 win over Arsenal will make it difficult to force his way into the starting line-up.

“This week I was finally training with the whole squad, and I’m looking forward to giving a slight headache to the manager to show that I’m ready to play,” he told whufc.com.

“Truthfully it has been a while, and I have received a lot of messages showing the affection and support from all the West Ham fans, and yes, the truth is that I want to show them what I can do, so I want to show that I can play for this squad."

Spaniard is fighting fit

The 23-year-old has revealed he could have played against Arsenal but missed the curtain raiser as a precaution.

After completing his big move Obiang was thrust straight into pre-season and he said his eagerness to train in order to impress may have made the injury worse.

He is back now, though, but how will he fit into Bilic's midfield, particularly coming off the back of such an outstanding performance at the Emirates?

Similar in style to Carrick, pass master will add a new dimension to West Ham's midfield

Somewhat unsurprisingly for a Spaniard, the biggest asset Obiang has in his armoury is his passing quality and range.

While the Hammers have the combative qualities of Mark Noble, the attacking brilliance of Dimitri Payet and the raw youthful promise of Reece Oxford in the centre of the park Obiang will offer that ability to not only to break up play, but also to use his passing to open up teams on the counter attack.

It was a tactic that worked to perfection at Arsenal and can only be improved by Obiang's return to fitness.

An accurate comparison for Hammers fans would be Michael Carrick.

Who would make way?

His return to fitness begs the question, just who would Obiang displace?

The obvious one would be Reece Oxford give his tender years. But the giant 16-year-old was so impressive against the Gunners, and so composed, that Bilic may be tempted to keep him in against Leicester.

Noble was probably West Ham's worst player overall in a superb team performance so he is another who could find himself under threat.

Given his lack of pre-season match action, Bilic will probably want to ease Obiang into things and may well decide to introduce him from the bench over the next few matches.

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