West Ham have their own 'Ronaldo & Messi' in the ranks and it's brilliant - Kenny
West Ham stars Tomas Soucek and Vladimir Coufal will use their friendly rivalry to spur each other on.
So says ex-Premier League goalkeeper Paddy Kenny, speaking exclusively to Football Insider about the Czech Republic contingent at the London Stadium.
West Ham relayed the message on 14th July that Soucek had won the annual Czech Republic Golden Ball for his achievements in 2020-21.
It is the second time the 26-year-old midfielder has won the award which has been held by the likes of Tomas Rosicky, Pavel Nedved and Petr Cech.
Coufal, 28, also had an excellent season as the Hammers finished 6th in the league and the Czech Republic reached the quarter-finals of the Euros.
Kenny asserts that the countrymen will continue to push each other behind the scenes to be crowned their nation’s top player.
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“There will definitely be a friendly rivalry,” he told Football Insider correspondent Adam Williams.
“It’s a bit like Ronaldo and Messi over the years. They have pushed each other. It’s great to have that kind of competition to push them to do better.
“When I played as a goalkeeper, I wanted someone pushing me in training day in, day out.
“It wasn’t a case of that I wanted to do better, it was that I had to do better. Simple as.
“I think it’s good that the two Czech lads have got that. As long as West Ham are doing well, it’s good for them.“
Soucek netted 10 times in 2020-21 while Coufal set up seven goals from right-back.
As revealed by Football Insider yesterday (21st July), the Hammers have reignited their interest in fellow Czech Republic star Alex Kral.