Henry's ready to make up for lost time

Doneil Henry is raring to go after overcoming the hamstring injury which ended his 2014/15 campaign early.

Doneil Henry is itching to make up for lost time after recovering from the hamstring injury which ended his 2014/15 campaign early.

The Canadian international, who joined the Hammers in the January transfer window, suffered the injury in just his third game of a loan spell in the Sky Bet Championship with Blackburn Rovers.

That meant surgery and a lengthy road to recovery, but the 22-year-old is now working his way back to fitness and ready to contribute for the Hammers under new boss Slaven Bilic.

He said: “I’m looking ahead to brighter days now. I’m getting fit and my body feels a lot better than it did at this time last year.

"I’m ready to get started and look for positivity within the group, and try to impress the manager.

"It’s important for us, especially the younger players who might not be in the team right away, to stay positive and optimistic that when the chance comes they can make the most of the opportunity.”

West Ham’s season gets underway in a week’s time when they host FC Lusitans in the UEFA Europa League first qualifying round, with tickets available for just £10 adults and £5 under-16s.

The former Toronto FC defender is targeting that competition as an opportunity to make his mark with West Ham.

He added: “The most important thing right now is taking the matches as they come. Obviously I need to monitor the injury and I just want to do what I can to prevent in from happening again in the future. That means doing the right things, getting in the gym and doing my recovery.

“Right now I want to focus on getting ready for the upcoming matches and ensuring that I’m ready to go whenever I get my chance to play.”

Henry is currently with a group of players on a pre-season training camp in Ireland and he says that is the perfect way to prepare for this year’s early start.

He explained: “We’re here to get together as a team, get the fitness back and do the dirty stuff to dig deep and win matches when the season gets underway.

“Especially with the European competition this season, there will be a lot of games so everybody needs to get their fitness in and maintain it throughout the season. It’s going to be a long season and we’re going to need the full squad.

“By the end of this camp I should be a lot sharper, so right now I’m taking it day-by-day. Hopefully nothing flares up and I can have a successful pre-season.”