Leo Chambers is loving life again after overcoming his injury problems to be involved with the Development Squad at the start of the new season.
The Hammers youngster missed most of the last campaign with a knee problem, but has returned strongly in pre-season and started as the U21s got their season off to the perfect start by beating Aston Villa 3-0 last week.
Nick Haycock's squad travel to Everton next on Monday night looking for a second straight Barclays U21 Premier League success and Chambers is thrilled to be able to play his part once more.
WATCH THE FULL INTERVIEW WITH LEO ON WEST HAM TV HERE
"It's brilliant to be back," he beamed. "I missed it so much - I was out for about nine months and now I'm back playing I appreciate it so much more.
"Football's what I love doing and I missed it for nine months. It was hard, but I'm back playing now and it's great.
"Aston Villa was a good performance. I wouldn't say it was very good, we've still got a lot of improvements to make, but we won 3-0 and kept a clean sheet and that's what the gaffer asked for.
"We went out and did a job, got three points so it was a good start.
"We beat Everton 5-1 at their place last year, so we expect them to come out of the traps quite fast on Monday.
"We're preparing well for it, we know what to expect and it will be a very good game. We've just got to be professional about it and try to get three points."
A pleasing summer was capped for Chambers last week when he earned a call-up to the England set-up again, for the Under-19s' international friendly in Estonia on 5 September.
He explained: "It's always great to be called up to represent your country, and now I've just got to take that opportunity and play as well as I can.
"It's a proud moment when you step up another age group level with England. I've been involved since the Under-16s, so to now be playing Under-19s shows I'm making good progress.
"I can't rest on my laurels, I have to keep progressing and take it year-by-year.
"I played against Estonia a few years ago, and from what I know they're a good side. I'm sure it will be a very good game out there."