West Ham United have endured a tough season this year, first under Slaven Bilic and now under David Moyes. Moyes has done a decent enough job to stabilise things in East London, as he goes about trying to rebuild the reputation left in tatters after spells with Manchester United, Real Sociedad and Sunderland.
Nevertheless, the Hammers will have a strong representation at the World Cup this summer with their international squad, a typical characteristic of any Premier League team. The following three players are West Ham stars who will be hoping to grab the headlines in a positive manner with quality performances for their national team.
All time leading Mexico striker Javier Hernandez will be hoping to extend his international tally and fire Mexico through the group stages. The World Cup is where Hernandez drew attention back in 2010, earning himself a move to Manchester United where he has since kicked on to enjoy a fine career in Europe, playing for the likes of Bayer Leverkusen and Real Madrid.
Hernandez has experience mixed fortunes with the Hammers this season. He arrived with much expectation but has not made the impact he was hoping for. The Mexican should be settling for nothing less than a 20-goal season every time, and his eight strikes so far have been disappointing.
Nevertheless, this is all the more reason why Hernandez will be looking to put his woes behind him and remind everyone just what a handful he really is.
Argentine attacker Manuel Lanzini only recently made it into the national team, picking up three caps in the last 12 months. The 25-year-old is by far one of West Ham’s most talented players and, with some seriously stiff competition in the Argentina set-up, Lanzini will surely be content with making it on to the pitch for some game time at a major tournament.
Lanzini will likely be a bench option but, with his bags of quality, he could be a really strong impact player for Jorge Sampaoli. A convincing showing from Lanzini in Russia this summer could kick-start the international career that the former River Plate star has been crying out for.
Euro 2016 champion Joao Mario has become a regular in the Portugal side in the last few years since his rise to prominence at Sporting Lisbon. The Inter Milan loanee has been plying his trade at the London Stadium since joining up with Moyes in January. Having taken the Euros by storm in 2016, Mario will be hoping his Ronaldo-led side can make a similar impact at the World Cup this summer.
At 25, Mario probably imagined himself to be settling into life as a first-team regular at one of Europe’s top clubs. However, this season has proved that things have not quite gone to plan. Nevertheless, if the midfielder does himself justice in Russia, he should in theory have both West Ham and Inter dying for him to commit his future to them, and will be looking to bring his World Cup form back to the domestic scene in the coming season.