Stephen Hendrie discusses start to life at West Ham, admits he doesn’t know if he is close to first-team

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Hendrie left Scotland to move to West Ham at the end of last season.

Hendrie completed a switch from Hamilton to West Ham over the summer, and he has admitted to the Daily Record that he doesn’t know if Slaven Bilic is ready to select him for first-team action yet.

The left-back said: “It’s about being patient. I need to play a few more games, get my fitness levels up, play with the development squad and just keep working hard. If I’m playing well hopefully things will work out for me. I don’t know if I’m close to getting a game, the manager knows that, so all I can do is keep working hard and see where it takes me.”

Hendrie, 20, has yet to appear for the Hammers in a competitive game, and has instead spent the season in the Under-21 squad.

He was named on the substitutes bench for two Europa League qualifying games, but the young defender has yet to make the step up to substitutes role in Premier League action.

It is not a surprise that the Scottish youth international has yet to make his first-team bow for the East London club, with Bilic able to call upon one of the best left-backs in the division for domestic action.

Not many players would displace Aaron Cresswell, and Hendrie will have a tough task impressing in Under-21 action to fight for a place ahead of the former Ipswich man.

When Hendrie was signed, it was clear he was brought to the Boleyn Ground as a player for the future, and although he has stopped playing the competitive action that he was last season with Hamilton, he is still playing every week for the Hammers’ Under-21 squad.

If Hendrie continues to perform well at development level, and Cresswell suffers a drop in form in the first-team, it may just be up to the Scotsman to take his place in Bilic’s plans, and he will have to do all he can to prove he deserves to stay there.

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