Jack Collison has been rewarded for his terrific form and progress with a new contract that will keep him at the Boleyn Ground until 2013.
After his senior breakthrough last season, the 20-year-old Welsh international has made five Barclays Premier League appearances this campaign. That run has included his first goal at senior level last month against Everton. He was then singled out for praise by Gianfranco Zola after his display in last Sunday's 1-1 draw at Chelsea when he more than held his own in midfield against Frank Lampard, Deco and Michael Ballack.
Speaking after putting pen to paper on Thursday night, Collison said: "It has been a really good year for me, it is a nice Christmas present and a good way to end the year after making my debut for the senior team at Arsenal at the beginning of the year. I now want to claim a regular place in the starting eleven if I can and really push on now.
"I am delighted that the club wants me here for a long time. It gives you security and now it is sorted, I can just concentrate on my football. I have worked my way through from the youth team to the first and want to be a regular part of it all. The new manager has come in and given me the confidence to show what I can do and now I am aiming to make the most of all my opportunities on the pitch."
West Ham United CEO Scott Duxbury said: "I am delighted that Jack has signed a new long-term deal and followed Freddie Sears and Carlton Cole in committing his long-term future to West Ham United. I know Gianfranco Zola and his staff have been very impressed with him and this is just reward for all his hard work. As his performance at Chelsea showed last week, Jack is an exciting young player and one the Academy can be proud of producing. We are fully committed to giving our young players a chance to shine in the first team."