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‘Outstanding' West Ham winger Antonio has been on 'fantastic journey' - England boss Allardyce

England boss Sam Allardyce has handed a debut call-up to West Ham United winger Michail Antonio for this weekend's 2018 World Cup qualifier in Slovakia.

The 26-year-old signed for the Hammers from Championship club Nottingham Forest last summer having spent time at non-league level and making his way through the grades.

Allardyce described Antonio's journey to top flight football as 'fantastic' and was delighted to include him in the roster for Sunday's trip to Trnava.

"I think he's in outstanding form," Allardyce told TheFA.com.

"This is another lad with a great journey - it's a fantastic journey that he's been on, from non-league to now an international call-up.

"Last year his impact on West Ham was only overshadowed by (Dimitri) Payet.

'He scored nine goals in his first season and he's a terrific athlete, a good crosser and a goal-scorer. I'm looking forward to him coming, and looking forward to meeting everybody.

'Hopefully we will have a good few days' preparation and get to know each other on the basis of trying to go and win in Slovakia."

Vyom Chaudhary
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Vyom Chaudhary

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