Martha Thomas: London Stadium crowd will be an advantage over Tottenham


Having moved from Dorset to Florida to France to West Ham United, Martha Thomas recognises a massive occasion in her life when she sees one.

The clinical striker joined the Hammers from Le Havre AC this summer having previously racked up the goals on both sides of the Atlantic, helping her side last season to a second-place finish in France’s Feminine Division 2.

Thomas has since set about endearing herself to her new supporters in Claret and Blue with two smart finishes in the first month of the campaign.

Now, the advent of West Ham United’s first ever first-ever Barclays FA Women’s Super League match at London Stadium looms on the horizon.

Typically, however, the ice-cool 23-year-old responds with composure to the exciting prospect, expressing her belief that the more fans’ voices that can be heard at Sunday's match, the greater the Irons’ psychological advantage will be over London rivals Tottenham.

“As a group we’re all really excited to get here and play at the London Stadium,” Thomas told “It’s a massive stadium, and we’re hoping to get a lot of fans to come out and support us.

“I think there’ll be a lot of nerves, but I think we can use that to our advantage. I think it could intimidate Tottenham a little bit as well, and we can use our home pitch and have our crowd behind us which could be a big advantage for us.

“It’s a London derby as well, so having that atmosphere, and going into the game with the crowd behind us, is already an advantage.”

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Martha Thomas against Arsenal

While the occasion is set to be a spectacular one for all involved, the Hammers’ newest No9 is confident that she and her teammates can harness any nerves to their advantage.

“To play in front of a big crowd like this will be different for a lot of us,” Thomas admitted. “Some of our players have played in front of big crowds, but I know for me and a lot of people, this will definitely be the biggest crowd I’ve played in front of, so it is really exciting.

“I can just imagine 60,000 people being in here, how loud it would seem on the field, just having that support. Obviously West Ham has a huge fanbase, so if we can get quite a few people in here, I think it would be amazing.”

Thomas’ first goal this month came in the Irons’ final game of pre-season earlier this month – coincidentally against Tottenham at Rush Green Stadium.

Would a goal at London Stadium on Sunday top that feeling, however? 

“It would be a hundred times better, I’m sure,” Thomas smiles, before adding “Hopefully!”

She won’t be the only one in Claret and Blue in that mindset on Sunday – what could be just another massive occasion in the life of Martha Thomas.


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