Confident Antonio looking to keep West Ham in the race for Europe


Michail Antonio of West Ham United celebrates scoring his team's second goal with Mohammed Kudus of West Ham United during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Liverpool FC at London Stadium on April 27, 2024 in London, England.

Jamaica striker Michail Antonio said his confidence was soaring after he scored his third goal in as many matches and enabled West Ham United to earn a 2-2 draw with English Premier League giants Liverpool on Saturday.

Antonio scored a header inside the final 15 minutes for his seventh goal this season and followed up a first-half strike from Jarrod Bowen on his 200th appearance for the Hammers to all but dent the hopes of Liverpool from strongly contending for the EPL title at London Stadium.

“I’ve got three goals in the last three games, and I’m really building the confidence up and believe that, every game I go into, I’m going to score, so hopefully I can keep that run going,” he said.

The result on Saturday meant that the Hammers now have an outside chance of securing European qualification, in eighth place in the 20-team table on 49 points with three matches to play, with a short trip to cross-town rivals Chelsea in store next.

Still fighting

Antonio felt the east London club could be proud of the way they fought back late to prevent Liverpool from winning.

“It’s a massive point, especially after going 2-1 down,” the Reggae Boyz frontman said. “We’re still fighting for Europe, but obviously we’ve made it difficult for ourselves with our recent results, and before the game anybody would take a point against Liverpool.

“But I feel that, over the last couple of years we’ve been doing better against Liverpool and have had a couple of results at home against them, so hopefully we can keep going, keep pushing and get that European slot.”

He added: “Liverpool were creating a lot of opportunities, getting it out wide and getting balls into our box, and ‘Phonse’ (goalkeeper Alphonse Areola) was making some unbelievable saves.

“We managed to get the first goal, which Jarrod took unbelievably well, and one thing with us is that we’ll keep digging in, and we keep believing we can get a goal, so when we went 2-1 down, we just kept pushing, made sure we didn’t concede another and managed to equalise.”

Bowen equalled the EPL record of Paolo Di Canio for most goals in a single season for the Hammers when he headed in his 16th of the campaign – and 20th in all competitions – two minutes before the interval.

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Antonio has the club record for most goals with 67 – and England international Bowen is 24 adrift on 43 and has joked that his aim is to own the record at some time – but the 34-year-old Jamaica international has no plans of hanging up his scoring boots any time soon.

“One thing I know about Jarrod is that, if he is on his left foot and I’m in space, he’ll pick me out,” Antonio said. “His left foot is unbelievable, and it was an unbelievable cross. He is a massive player for us and key to how we play.”

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