Hines working hard

Zavon Hines is determined to come back stronger after undergoing surgery on a knee injury.

The England Under-21 striker has not played since the 5 December visit of Manchester United because of his injury and has now undergone an operation that will probably keep him out for the rest of the season. Hines has already begun his rehab work and is focused fully on returning as soon as possible.

He said: "The operation went well. I was told to rest first of all and now I am able to do a few small things like strengthening work, just do things slowly and at a steady pace. Take it day by day.

"It is nice to get the operation over and done with and now I am just looking to work as hard as I can to get back. It is important I take it one thing at a time.

"I feel I am doing well, the staff at West Ham will help me do what I have to do. The most important thing is doing everything right, so I don't get any other problems and can come back even stronger than before.

"There is no pressure on me with a target for coming back, which is good as it means I can just get on with my rehab work and work hard, concentrating on what I have to do day by day. Obviously I want to be playing, but I know I have to do all my rehab work properly and it will be as long as it takes really."

Still only 21, Hines had enjoyed a strong start to the season, making 15 appearances in total and more than contributing to the cause. He plans to cheer on his team-mates for the rest of the season although acknowledges that his work at Chadwell Heath will have to come first.

"I will come to games when I can, it all depends on what work I have to do," he said. "I had a good start to the season and enjoyed getting in the first team. Obviously with players back and any new additions to the squad that means more competition for places, but that is fine.

"It just makes you want to work even harder, it is also a good thing all round for the club as well. For now, I am just concentrating on what I have to do and making sure that when I get back, I am raring to go."

Gianfranco Zola has also wished his young forward well. "It is a real pity for us to have lost Zavon," he said. "He was doing very well and giving us some freshness, something different.

"I think his rehab is going very well and hopefully he will be back as soon as he can. He is a player that can give us satisfaction for the future. He is still young and hopefully his recovery will go well."