On Sunday afternoon, Michail Antonio not only helped secure 3-points for West Ham, but he also joined a Hammers legend as the club’s leaders in EPL goals.
In typical fashion, West Ham gave us all a heart attack on the way to finally winning an opening day match and in Newcastle of all places. When Antonio’s 66th-minute goal went in, it all but secured the Hammer’s victory, as well as giving him his 47th EPL goal under West Ham. A feat that now sits him with Paolo Di Canio atop the Hammer’s all-time leaderboard.
Since joining in 2015, there are miles and miles of stories that go along with almost every goal from Antonio. From celebrations to magical revivals, let’s go down memory lane and look at how he got to where he is today. Let’s start in Southampton when he finally got to take down his “missing persons” label.
It had been a few months since arriving from Nottingham Forrest, and Antonio was getting some slack for not being present in the goal column. A winger at the time, Miggy was poised to make a splash, and he finally did just before the New Year as he finally opened with West Ham account and teed up Andy Carroll to take home all 3-points.
West Ham: Reliving Michail Antonio’s magical goal record
The 2015/16 and 2016/17 seasons were pretty magical for budding Antonio, but he struggled to find a home positionally. Slaven Bilic was constantly moving him from the wing to upfront and even back on defense. All of that movement developed a confidence issue in him, and after scoring eight and nine goals respectively in those campaigns, his next years went pretty dark.
After a summer of transfer rumors, the 2018/19 season was a turning point in his career. He recorded six of his 47 PL goals that season and some memorable ones as well. Most notably from that season was his free-kick sneak about goal against Liverpool, and opening the goal account at the NEW Hotspur Stadium all but brought his confidence back to life.
Michail Antonio’s past two seasons have been his best since joining the club, and besides the continual injury that seemingly plagues every season, he has become the leading man week in and week out. From an incredible bicycle kick (posted above) to scoring four goals in one match, Miggy has used these past two years to solidify himself and his goal-scoring record.
Sunday afternoon’s goal showed us two things. One, Michail Antonio is still a ferocious beast and plays his heart out 100% of the time. Two, his aim first touch has gotten much better. West Ham relies heavily on the Jamaican international, and it’s evident as to why. From all of us at GSH, congrats Michail, and here’s to many more magical moments in Claret and Blue!