Westley delighted for debutant Samuelsen

Academy Director Terry Westley hails Martin Samuelsen’s first senior international cap for Norway
Academy Director and Head of Coaching and Player Development Terry Westley has hailed Martin Samuelsen’s first senior international cap for Norway.

Westley played a major role in attracting the exciting winger to join West Ham United from Manchester City in summer 2015.

A year on and Samuelsen has made his Hammers debut, starred for loan club Peterborough United, helped the Development Squad to lift the U21 Premier League Cup and now made a successful bow for his national team.

The Haugesund-born youngster caught the eye in Oslo, with his mazy run helping to set up Alexander Sorloth’s winner in Norway’s 3-2 victory.

Westley, for one, says the teenager has worked hard for the opportunities he has earned over the past 12 months.

“For any club to have full internationals shows they have a very talented team, but for someone of 19 years of age to be called-up to the full squad for matches against the likes of Portugal, Iceland and Belgium shows how far Martin has come in a short space of time,” said the Academy Director.

“He went out on loan and had a real impact for Peterborough against West Bromwich Albion in the FA Cup live on TV, has also done very well for our Under-21s and has consistently caught the eye.

“As an Academy and as a Club, we were proud to see Martin become our latest full international when he came on and helped Norway to beat a decent Iceland side on Wednesday evening.”

Westley says Samuelsen still has a way to go before he is the finished article, but his attitude, work ethic and match-winning ability will all stand him in good stead as he continues to develop.

Having already featured twice for Slaven Bilic’s side, the next challenge for the young Norwegian is to force his way into the first-team squad on a regular basis.

“Even before he made his debut for Slaven last year, Martin showed glimpses of what a talented boy he is, so I’m delighted for him because he and his family put their trust in us by joining West Ham when he had many other options.

“For Martin, making his Norway debut is a fairytale end to the season and will hopefully push him to achieve even more next season and make the next step in his career with us.”

Samuelsen will hope to earn his second cap when Norway take on Euro 2016 qualifiers Belgium in Brussels on Sunday.