Antonio played 53 minutes of the 0-0 draw with Manchester United on Saturday, and the winger has told London24 that he is ready to take his chance if Slaven Bilic offers him a starting role in the first-team.
When asked if he can now kick on and start playing more for the Hammers, Antonio said: “With the injuries I am hoping so. Obviously it depends on what the manager thinks will work on the day. If he decides to give me that opportunity then great, if he doesn’t I’ll still work hard and be patient. I’ve still got four years on my contact, but hopefully he decides to give it to me sooner rather than later. I believe in my ability and when I get the opportunity I’ll take it.”
The performance against United was just his third appearance for West Ham, despite arriving at the Boleyn Ground on transfer deadline day.
He played 30 minutes of the away victory at Manchester City back in September, but has since had to spend his time on the sidelines and playing Under-21 football.
The attacking players have all been performing excellently, and Antonio’s chance this weekend was down to injuries to key players.
He started the game on the substitutes bench, but was thrown into action when Victor Moses went off injured, and put in a solid performance. He was a consistent attacking threat, and provided defensive stability down the right-wing, showing that he does have the required quality for the Premier League.
There are no confirmations as to how long Moses is set to be out of action for, but if he has an extended spell on the sidelines, it could be that Antonio starts his first game for West Ham this coming weekend against Stoke City.