West Ham’s Maynard: That will give the gaffer some food for thought

Hammers striker admits his frustration at being left on the sidelines at Upton Park

Just a week ago, striker Sam Baldock was forced to leave West Ham in search of first-team football.

Nicky Maynard is desperate not to follow in his footsteps and he staked his case on Tuesday night at Upton Park with a goal and a good performance against former club Crewe Alexandra.

“I like to think I showed what I can do,” said the 25-year-old who has now scored four goals in 17 appearances in claret and blue.

“I have not really played my part this season so far and this was my chance and hopefully I have given the gaffer some food for thought.

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“As long as I keep getting chances, I am going to make sure I take them.”

Baldock left a frustrated man and Maynard admits that he has had similar moments since signing for the club back in January.

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“I’ve not had my chance in the Premier League which has been a bit frustrating,” he admitted.

“But it is a team game and I have to keep working and waiting for a chance.”

Maynard opened his account for the season after 34 minutes of Tuesday’s 2-0 victory over Crewe with a typical poacher’s finish in the box and he was only denied another soon after by a sharp save.

“I am one of those who just waits to pounce on lost causes and it has come to me in the penalty area and I have just side-footed it into the corner,” he said.

“They are the kind of finishes I like, so long as I can keep getting into the box, I will take them all day.”

That is the problem of course. With manager Sam Allardyce opting to play just a lone striker, that means Maynard will have to come off the wing to score his goals and that is certainly not his natural game.

The former Bristol City striker though is toeing the party line at the moment.

“At the end of the day, I just want to play football and whether that is wide or in the middle or centre half even, I just want to give my all for the team, whatever the gaffer thinks is best suited for the team on the day,” he insisted.

“I have got no reason to think I wouldn’t fit into the team.

“I came here for a reason and that is to play football and score goals and help West Ham become a successful Premier League team.”

There have been rumours this week that Maynard may be shipped out in the same way that Baldock was, but as far as the player goes that is all they are.

“As far as I’m concerned I have not heard anything,” he said.

“They are just rumours as far as I am concerned and I have had friends and people texting me to ask am I going to this club or that club?

“But myself and my representatives have not heard anything from the board or the gaffer, so as far as I’m concerned they are just rumours.”

Maynard is the sort of player who can add pace and urgency to the forward line, just as Baldock was.

It would be a real shame for the versatility of the squad if West Ham decided that with their current rigid formation, they can do without him.

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