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2013-10-04T11:00:00 Updated 2015-02-18T23:50:54

Djair making himself at home

The last time West Ham United signed a Bermuda-born forward, he became a Boleyn Ground great and went on to manage his national team and be made an MBE.

It might be a bit unfair to expect Djair Parfitt-Williams to follow in the footsteps of Clyde Best, but the young Academy forward is certainly making a name for himself.

The striker, who turned 17 on Tuesday, was born on the North Atlantic island before moving to the United States as a child, where he was seen by Best while playing for the San Jose Earthquakes Academy and later recommended to the Club.

"I'm from Bermuda originally before I moved to California when I was eight, then I moved to England," he explained. "It gets hard sometimes because I miss my family and my boys back home but this is what I have wanted to do since I was a little kid, so I have to make sacrifices.

"I'm cool with everybody in the dressing room, which makes things easier."

Parfitt-Williams is just a few months into his full-time scholarship with the Hammers, but already he has impressed with his technical ability, pace and eye for goal.

After netting three goals in four appearances for the U18s last season while still a schoolboy, the first-year scholar has netted once in six Barclays U18 Premier League appearances so far this term.

Last weekend, he starred as West Ham thrashed Liverpool 5-0 at Little Heath - a first win in six league matches after a frustrating period that saw the U18s dominate their opponents without achieving the results they deserved.

"At the start of the season, I didn't start the first game but I have worked hard and produced some good performances so they have put me in the starting line-up and it's gone well since.

"The coaches changed the training and put goals in all the drills to help us all with our finishing. That helped us, because we got five goals against Liverpool, so that was good.

"It was definitely a big achievement and everybody was happy, but now we've got to do it again."

Looking to the future, Parfitt-Williams is hoping to reach the top with both Club and country. While Best went on to play for Bermuda, the teenager is close to receiving his US citizenship and is targeting an international future for the Stars and Stripes.

"When people ask me where I'm from, I tell them California most of the time because if I say Bermuda they start asking loads of questions about where it is! I want to play for the US soon but I don't have my citizenship yet. I am a resident there, but to play for the US you have to have your citizenship.

"They have been calling me up but I've had to say 'No' because I haven't had the citizenship, but hopefully I'll get it in the next few months or something like that.

"Here, we have West Bromwich away this Saturday so hopefully we'll do the same thing as last week. I definitely feel we're going in the right direction. In training this week, we played the starting XI versus the other players and we did the same thing as we did on Saturday, so it seems like it's coming together.

"Everybody is working hard and it's going well right now."

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