Tony Gale believes Lanzini is more important than Payet for West Ham

West Ham's Manuel Lanzini celebrates scoring their first goal with Dimitri Payet

Both players were star performers for Slaven Bilic's side last season.

West Ham's Manuel Lanzini celebrates scoring their first goalWest Ham's Manuel Lanzini celebrates scoring their first goal

Tony Gale has told Sky Sports that he believes Manuel Lanzini, not Dimitri Payet, was key to West Ham’s success last season.

The Hammers enjoyed a strong first season under manager Slaven Bilic as they finished seventh and secured Europa League football.

Their star man was undeniably Dimitri Payet as he put in a series of impressive performances following his move from Marseille in the summer.

Dimitri Payet celebrates scoring the second goal for West HamDimitri Payet celebrates scoring the second goal for West Ham

He was not the only one to impress though, with fellow summer signings such as Lanzini and Michail Antonio also proving to be smart captures.

And Gale says he believes that it was Lanzini, not Payet, who made it happen for the Hammers last season.

“Lanzini is a special player,” he told Sky Sports.

“For me everyone was going on about Payet last season but Lanzini was the one that made it happen. He runs between the lines and he’s so important for West Ham.”

West Ham's Manuel Lanzini celebrates scoring their first goalWest Ham's Manuel Lanzini celebrates scoring their first goal

It now remains to be seen if the likes of Lanzini and Payet can shine again for Slaven Bilic’s side next season.

Second season syndrome is something that has affected a number of players in the Premier League and it would not be surprising if the Hammers duo suffered some sort of dip in form.

West Ham will clearly be hoping that isn’t the case, with both players key to their hopes of improving on last season.

West Ham's Manuel Lanzini celebrates scoring their first goal with Dimitri PayetWest Ham's Manuel Lanzini celebrates scoring their first goal with Dimitri Payet

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