Fanimo glad to be back

Matthias Fanimo is looking forward to his Development Squad return following his comeback from a long injury lay-off.

The winger played his part in the first team squad's 1-0 friendly win against Espanyol in Barcelona last week, having only just returned to fitness.

The 19-year-old is likely to feature for Nick Haycock's team this Friday night when they take on Manchester City at the Boleyn Ground - with admission free for Season Ticket Holders - and Fanimo can't wait to be back in action.

He told West Ham TV: "I'm looking forward to it whether I start or come on.

"It will just be good to be back around the under-21 lads, knocking the ball around and enjoying my football again.

"I've still got a lot of fitness work to do, but physically I felt good and like I'm getting back in shape so I'm just looking forward to the Man City game on Friday."

He joins up with a Development Squad that are full of confidence having overturned a three goal deficit to win 5-4 against Newcastle in their last Barclays Under-21 Premier League outing.

Everton and Aston Villa have also been defeated with a narrow loss to Tottenham at the Boleyn Ground the team's only slip-up thus far.

Fanimo will be playing alongside several of the young Hammers who joined him for the trip to Spain, and he was full of praise for the way they handled the step-up.

"They did really well, Pelly Ruddock played well starting the game and playing the full 90 minutes.

"Me, Elliot Lee, Callum Driver, Seb Lletget and George Moncur did well when we came on.

"I think it was a great experience for us playing in a different country against a team like Espanyol which was really good."

With injury having kept the livewire wide man out since January, Fanimo is just glad to be back training with the team at Chadwell Heath.

And whilst not playing for so long can have its effects, the youngster reveals his first team call-up lifted his spirits.

He said: "I felt surprisingly good.

"Normally you feel down because you don't play, but for me coming straight back into the first team fold was pretty good, it gave me a lift and the first team lads were a great help out there.

"I was excited when I came on, because I haven't played for about 20 weeks coming back from injury.

"It was a good experience and the first team lads helped me through it. I felt calm, I enjoyed it."

Now fully focused on the challenge of Manchester City, the speedy winger says the team have come together under Nick Haycock and are reaping the rewards.

Fanimo hopes come Friday night the Development squad can produce a performance when they take to the Boleyn Ground turf.

"We've got a good manager in Nick Haycock and we have a good bunch of players who have bought into his methods and hopefully it will pay-off against Man City.

"It's always good to play at the Boleyn Ground, it's always nice to play where you'd be expected to if selected for the first team. There'll be a good atmosphere and it will be a great experience for us.

"We just want to win the game, get another three points on the board and play some good football."