By Danny Mills

30th Nov, 2020 | 2:21pm

Mills Exclusive: West Ham big name tipped to be left out v Villa after critical update

Danny Mills has tipped West Ham striker Sebastien Haller to retain his place against Aston Villa tonight.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Connor Whitley, the former England and Manchester City full-back claimed it would massively affect his confidence if he was dropped.

The Ivory Coast international has started the Hammers’ last three games in the absence of Michail Antonio and scored the only goal in their 1-0 win over Sheffield United last weekend.

After narrowly missing out on a place against the bench in Yorkshire, Antonio returned to full training this week after recovering from a hamstring injury.

The 30-year-old has led the line fantastically for the Irons this season and has scored three goals in six Premier League games.

Asked by Football Insider whether Antonio will come straight back into the starting XI, Mills said:

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“David Moyes is a very experienced manager and a very good coach as well so he’ll see that Haller has come in for a couple of games, scored a terrific goal, got them three points so if he drops him how will that affect his confidence? That could be a real hammer blow to him. 

“If Antonio is fit then there’s a good chance he’ll start from the bench and just see how things go.

“If a player has done well, the last thing you want to do is replace him instantly because that’s a massive dent in his confidence.”

Haller has scored six goals in 11 appearances across all competitions this term, but that includes four goals against League One opposition in the Carabao Cup.

Since moving to the London Stadium from Eintracht Frankfurt for a club-record fee of £45million fee, the 26-year-old has scored nine Premier League goals in 40 games.

In other West Ham news, a 28-year-old may quit the club next year and a January exit is possible.