When Mark Noble stepped onto the pitch a month ago at Stoke City, it was an incredibly proud moment for the Newham-born West Ham United skipper.
A little over 12 years after making his debut in the competition, the Hammers’ 3-0 victory at Stoke marked Noble’s 300th Premier League appearance in Claret & Blue.
Not only is Noble the first player in the club’s Premier League history to reach the milestone in their colours, but he has also spent his entire career in east London after coming through the Academy ranks.
Reaching the landmark was a feeling Noble could never have envisaged a decade ago, but one which makes him want to experience yet more highs with the club.
Playing so many games for the club you support in the Premier League is phenomenal
He said: “To reach 300 Premier League games not only with the club you support, but the one you’re born half-a-mile away from, where you used to kick the ball up against the gates and try to sneak in without a ticket, is incredible.
“I made my debut in this league when I was 18. We had just been promoted and I was named as a substitute against Blackburn. I came on for Hayden Mullins and I remember going home afterwards and sitting on the end of my mum and dad’s bed a mile down the road from the ground. So to now captain this great football club is special.
“The two best games were both against Manchester United – the one where Carlos Tevez scored for us to stay in the Premier League and the last ever game at the Boleyn, which was just such an emotional occasion.
“I’m always going to be associated with West Ham and playing so many games for the club you support in the Premier League is phenomenal.”