September 21 2014 Latest news:
Friday, August 8, 2014
Enner Valencia says he was convinced to join West Ham by the club’s ambitions to play European football in the Olympic Stadium.
Ecuador star Valencia sealed completed his £12million transfer to West Ham from Mexican side Pachuca at the end of July, signing a five-year deal with the Hammers after bagging three goals in three games at the World Cup.
The 24-year-old was unveiled in front of the Olympic Stadium on Thursday, and he says he held lengthy talks with Sam Allardyce and the club’s chairmen before sealing the deal.
Valencia was impressed by the club’s long-term ambitions, and he hopes he’ll play Champions League football in their new Stratford home after they leave Upton Park in 2016.
“Before signing we spoke a lot about the ambitions of the club to try and play European football,” Valencia said.
“It’s a great challenge and I’m going to work very hard for it. We’re going to try to make top four.
“From what I’ve heard, it will be in around two seasons that they move here [the Olympic Stadium] and it will definitely be great for the club and for us players as well.
“Of course I watched the Olympics,” he added. “When I heard the news that West Ham might come to the stadium, I was delighted.
“It’s a great venue, one of the best in the world and I’m looking forward to playing here in 2016.”
Valencia was linked with a number of clubs around Europe following his sparkling performances in Brazil, but the man nicknamed ‘Superman’ in his homeland is delighted to get a chance in the Premier League.
“After the World Cup several offers came around but when I found out that West Ham were interested I said definitely yes because it is one of my dreams to play in the Premier League,” he said.
“I’m felling very good and very welcome at West Ham. Step by step I’m trying to get used to the city.
“It’s very different. It’s massive for me and my career. It’s a big step and I’m trying to get used to it.”