Chambers delighted to be back playing

After a lengthy spell on the sidelines, Leo Chambers completed his first 90 minutes
They say a week is a long time in football, so spare a thought for West Ham United defender Leo Chambers, who made his long awaited return to action in a Claret and Blue shirt after more than 18 months out through injury.

Having completed his first 90 minutes since January 2014, the 20-year-old south Londoner was arguably one of the Irons’ better players as he marshalled the defence in the Hammers’ opening game of the season, a 2-1 defeat away at West Bromwich Albion.

While the defeat was a disappointment, Chambers was clearly delighted to be back among the thick of the action: “It was very good to be back playing, it’s my first game in a while, I’m just grateful to be playing again really.

“Today was my first full ninety in a year and half, since January two years ago; it’s something I’ve been concentrating on for a long time. I’m delighted to have played the full ninety, I think I did well, but the main thing was just to be out there.”

For any player, a sustained period out of the game is a serious blow, and Chambers was quick to admit that times during the layoff were tough. 

However, the highly rated defender now has every reason to be cheerful as he thanked those that have helped him return to match fitness.  

“It was a very tough period being out for so long. A lot of stuff went on off the pitch, away from the training ground but I managed to cope, the people around me helped a lot, the staff, my family but also my teammates. I’m just happy to be playing right now.

“I haven’t played with a lot of these players until now; a lot has changed in the time I’ve been out. But I thought we dominated, we passed them off the park really, and it’s just a shame about the result.”

Reflecting on a game that saw the Hammers create numerous chances before West Brom sealed the three points with an 88th minute goal.

Not only did he impress in his defensive duties, Chambers went close to doubling the Hammers’ tally with a powerful header from a corner: “As you know I’m not the tallest player out there so I had to get away from the tallest guy, I managed to get a yard on him, get my head on it but unfortunately hit it down the goalkeepers throat.

“It’s strange how we lost really, but that’s football really. We have to take the positives away, I think there are a lot and hopefully we can get a better result in our next game.

“My hopes like everyone else is to break into the first team, that’s always been the goal. If that doesn’t happen then we’ll have to go back to the drawing board and hopefully get a loan somewhere.”