By Abigail Withey
West Ham United has confirmed that winger Michail Antonio will return to the squad ready for the club’s Premier League clash against Sunderland on Saturday.
The 27-year-old has been out since April after the striker sustained a hamstring injury during the Hammers’ victory over Swansea City, but is due to return after four and a half months on the sidelines.
The Hammers announced the attacker’s return on their official website on Thursday, and Slaven Bilic shared his delight around the Englishman’s recovery.
The boss said: “Michail is back, he is fit, he played for the Under-23s last week on the Friday when we played Manchester United on the Sunday, which was part of the plan.”
“He looked really good, he is in shape and he has been training with us for two-and-a-half weeks now,” Bilic told the Hammers website. “He did 90 minutes on a big pitch in the Under-23s and then he came back to train with us and he looks good and he looks ready.”
In addition to Antonio, fan favourite Andy Carroll is expected to return very soon to the West Ham squad.
The club have confirmed that the 28-year-old forward in on course to feature for the Hammers against Newcastle United next Saturday.
Carroll missed a large majority of the previous season due to injury after initially sustaining a knee problem which saw the forward sidelined for 17 games as well as a reoccurring groin issue which meant he missed out on 11 games.
Despite his injuries, the former Liverpool striker managed to provide seven goals for the Hammers during his 22 appearances across all competitions, and his return will be highly anticipated by fans.
In addition to Carroll, the club confirmed that both Cheikhou Kouyate and Manuel Lanzini were also expected to be fit for the Newcastle clash.
In other West Ham news, this enforcer is heading the London to complete his move to the Hammers.