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West Ham’s Reid: We can’t make excuses anymore

16:30 27 January 2014

Hammer of the year Winston Reid returned to full training on Monday and he is plotting West Ham’s Premier League survival

West Ham defender Winston Reid returned to full training for the first time since November today (Monday) and insisted that the team can now have no excuses in their battle for Premier League survival.

The 25-year-old has been out of action since the beginning of November after breaking his ankle in training, but he has finally come through a lengthy rehabilitation to join in with the rest of the squad.

“It is a big relief to be back after three months out,” he said. “It wasn’t too bad, I was a bit rusty as I have been out for a fair bit, but I will try to work hard and get back in the team as soon as possible.”

It was on the verge of his World Cup play-off for New Zealand against Mexico, that Reid suffered the injury and he has been on the sidelines ever since.

“Basically I was running with the ball and someone came sliding from my blind side,” explained the international captain. “I didn’t see him coming and my foot got stuck under his foot and I sort of twisted my ankle.

“It is certainly the injury that has taken the longest in my career, so I guess it was the worst, but it was pretty basic really. For instance when I had the operation it only took 10 or 15 minutes. It was just in and out, put a tightrope in there and I was ready to go.

“Luckily enough it wasn’t more serious than that, but it just takes time to heal unfortunately.

While Reid has watched nervously from the touchline, the team have struggled to keep out of the relegation zone, but the current Hammer of the Year is confident that West Ham can get out of trouble.

“I think we have got all our players back, as well as two new boys in, so I don’t think we have got any excuses anymore, it is down to the players to deliver the goods,” he said.

“The staff around us can only do so much, but at the end of the day it is the 11 that go out on the pitch that have to do the job.”

Reid has already been through the heartbreak of New Zealand’s defeat in the World Cup, where he was unable to play; now he wants to make sure he plays his part in his club’s survival.

“I wasn’t able to travel to the World Cup games because I wasn’t allowed to move for two weeks, I just had to sit on the couch and to watch the Mexico games on the telly wasn’t the easiest thing to do,” he reflected.

“We always knew what were going to be up against, but on those days you have to have every single player ready and Mexico had to have two off days, but unfortunately they didn’t, they had two on days.”

So when are we likely to see the defender back in action? He is not sure himself.

“If I could, I would want to go out there and play on Wednesday, but that is probably not realistic,” said Reid. “We will just have to marry what the physios say with what the manager says and see how my ankle feels day by day.”

Reid has already suffered the bitterness of relegation at West Ham where he was unable to do anything about it after being frozen out by manager Avram Grant, now he is determined to play his part.

“It is going to be a big 16 games and it is certainly not like it was last season,” he said. “At this stage we were pretty much safe, but it is not going to be like that now.

“We have put ourselves in this situation and we have to get ourselves out of it, but if we all do our jobs correctly and give it 100 per cent then I think we will be ok.”

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