Mixed emotions for Hammers debutant Hawa Cissoko
There were both positive and negative feelings for Hawa Cissoko after Sunday’s match with Brighton & Hove Albion, after the defender made her West Ham United debut in the 1-0 defeat.
The France international entered the fray with 79 minutes on the clock, replacing Cho So-hyun, to earn her first outing in Claret and Blue for Matt Beard’s side.
Cissoko has had a long wait for her maiden West Ham outing, undergoing surgery on a minor injury at the start of the campaign, and the versatile defender was delighted to finally get out and play her first minutes for the Irons, albeit in defeat.
“I feel good and bad,” the 23-year-old told West Ham TV. “It’s bad because we lost but it’s good because it’s my first step. I’m so happy because I’m feeling confident. I won all my duels so I’m happy with that.”
The defender has formed a good friendship with fellow France international Kenza Dali, and Cissoko has credited the midfielder for helping her settle into life in east London.
“I feel good. Honestly, my first couple of weeks after my injury were so hard. Kenza Dali wasn’t here, she was away with the national team, and since she’s come back onto the pitch, she’s helped me feel better, very confident and I’m very happy.”
Having had her first taste of football in England, Cissoko is ready to experience more of what the Barclays FA WSL has to offer in the coming weeks.
She added: “It’s my first time in England and I want to see how the game goes and see what the levels are. Again, I’m really happy, but I’m sad for losing the game.
“I came on for the last 15 minutes, with Brighton already tiring, so I couldn’t completely judge the level. I look forward to testing myself more.”