Speaking in his press conference ahead of Saturday’s Premier League season-opener against Manchester City, Manuel Pellegrini said he believes he now has competition for every place in his team.
The signing of six new players this summer has left the Chilean content that he has at least two players competing for each position.
At left-back, he has three, with Arthur Masuaku, Aaron Cresswell and Academy product Ben Johnson all competing for Pellegrini’s call.
For DR Congo international Masuaku, who recently signed a new contract with the Club until summer 2024, the challenge of securing that starting berth is one he is ready to rise to.
“You need that competition in each position” the No26 confirmed. “Cress is my guy; Ben as well. We’re all trying to give our best to play. I think it will be the best one in the moment that will play.
“If Cress is ahead of me, I will try to just give my best to be ahead of him. Ben as well. It’s good. We’re very good playing in the same position.”
I hope I can improve this year because I understand some things better because it’s been a year with him, and he’s given me that support
Pellegrini’s belief in Masuaku’s ability to perform consistently at Premier League level was confirmed by his decision to offer the former Olympiacos and Valenciennes player a new deal. And, in turn, the 25-year-old has confidence in his manager’s ability to continue developing his undoubted and varied talents.
“Since I joined the Club, he is the first manager who I felt has helped me improve,” said Masuaku, with typical candidness. “He believes in me a lot. He always says to me that he believes in me, that I can give more than I’m giving now.
“It’s good when you have that support from your coach. You feel stronger and I hope I can improve this year because I understand some things better because it’s been a year with him, and he’s given me that support.”
After Masuaku finished last season strongly, he will hope to be in the starting eleven at London Stadium on Saturday. And you can be there to see the Hammers kick-off the 2019/20 campaign, with seats available now via the Ticket Exchange.