(Reuters) - West Ham United striker Javier Hernandez is targeting a regular spot in the Premier League club’s starting XI after successive substitute appearances in recent games.
The 29-year-old, who joined the London outfit in July, started the first 11 of West Ham’s 20 league games so far but has been used as a substitute in four consecutive league matches since his return from a hamstring injury last month.
“If you ask all footballers all over the world, they will tell you they don’t want to be on the bench, and that’s a normal thing,” Hernandez told the club’s website (www.whufc.com).
“They all want to play and I’m trying to prove that I want to be involved with more minutes, with more starts, and then we’ll see what happens (when I’m on the pitch).
“I’m always going to give everything for the team, whenever I am on the pitch. I love football and I want to be as professional as I can... if I am given one minute or 90 minutes, and I will try to do my best.”
Hernandez also highlighted the importance of West Ham’s next three games as they host West Bromwich Albion and travel to local rivals Tottenham Hotspur in the league, followed by an FA Cup tie at Shrewsbury Town within the space of a week.
West Ham have won two and drawn as many of their last five league matches but remain a point adrift of safety in 18th position, albeit with a game in hand, and host 19th-placed West Brom at the London Stadium on Tuesday.
Reporting by Aditi Prakash in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge