West Ham United manager David Moyes has confirmed that key forward Michail Antonio will be absent for the trip to face Premier League champions Liverpool on Saturday evening.
The essential Hammers forward has not recovered from a hamstring ailment, which was picked up during last weekend’s encouraging 1-1 draw against Manchester City.
West Ham have been reliant on Antonio in the final third over the last six months or longer, with the versatile star one of the team’s most important players.
The former Nottingham Forest star scored a sublime overhead kick last weekend against City and the Hammers will be a poorer side without him in it.
Moyes has admitted that the West Ham talisman will not feature this weekend, but stated that Antonio’s injury was not a long-term issue.
“Michail has been great for us and he’s played really, really well, he’s an important member of the team,” the Hammers boss told the club’s official website.
“He came off against Spurs and just felt something. He played against Manchester City and he just felt it again.
“We don’t think it’s too bad, but it’s enough to keep him out of this game against Liverpool.”
Antonio’s injury will surely give West Ham fringe man Sebastian Haller the chance to start his first Premier League game of the 2020-21 season and could well be the opportunity the French striker needs.
The Hammers broke the bank to land the centre forward from Eintracht Frankfurt last summer but he has struggled to have an impact in England.
West Ham have looked much improved since switching to a three-man defence and the Irons supporters will hope their side can record another positive result on Saturday.