By Noel Whelan

6th Nov, 2021 | 2:00pm

West Ham dressing room will be thrilled by 'brilliant' Antonio update - pundit

Noel Whelan has suggested the rest of the West Ham squad would be thrilled to see Michail Antonio handed a new and improved contract.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Leeds striker claimed the 31-year-old will be hugely popular in the dressing room thanks to his “character and attitude”.

As reported by The Times (29th October), West Ham have held talks about rewarding Antonio with improved terms.

Antonio’s current contract, which runs until 2023, is said to be worth £70,000-a-week.

That is reportedly £40,000-a-week less than top earner Andriy Yarmolenko.

Whelan suggested the rest of the dressing room would be delighted to see Antonio tied down to a new deal.

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“He’s really taken that role and owned it,” Whelan told Football Insider’s Russell Edge.

“You’ve got to give him great credit. He looks a great player to be in the dressing room, a brilliant role model to be around.

“He’s a handful to play against, he’s come and shown that he can be a difference in that West Ham side. A player that is full of confidence and he’s done everything right.

“He’s played out wide when needed, he’s taken that role on. It’s a difficult role to be both a centre-forward and out wide. It’s a different kind of position to play.

“But my word, when you look at the character and attitude, he is somebody who must be a joy to work with. You don’t look any further.

“He definitely deserves it. He’s up there for the golden boot at the minute. Rightly so you provide and give an updated contract and improved contract to a player who thoroughly deserves it.”

In other news, West Ham tipped to “hit the roof” as pundit issues transfer claim after £150million update.