Antonio hopes short summer break helps West Ham bid
- Credit: PA
West Ham United's Michail Antonio is hoping a short summer break can help them get the 2022-23 campaign off to a good start.
The Hammers are on a pre-season training camp in Scotland, with their Premier League season starting on August 7 against Manchester City at London Stadium.
And striker Antonio admits it feels like they have hardly been away, after finishing in seventh place and qualifying for the Europa Conference League last month.
"We had a lot of games last year and it feels like an international break, just having a little time off and now we're back in," he told whufc.com.
"It wasn't much of a break, but that could help us in building on the momentum we gained last year.
"You can see in the way the boys have come back, they're still looking fit and sharp and it'll be the same for the boys who were away playing internationals.
"With the summer being shorter, it helps us to stay fit and be ready to get going from the start."
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The 2022-23 season will stop for six weeks in November and December to allow players to go off to the World Cup final in Qatar.
And having played a career-high 47 times for the Hammers last season - and enjoyed being injury-free - Antonio is hoping to achieve more ove ther coming year.
"I'm a person who likes to play games to keep going and keep my body ticking over," he added.
"Hopefully I can keep going, keep pushign on and have a season like I did last year and go even better."
Having achieved European qualification in back-to-back seasons under David Moyes, Antonio is pleased to be back in familiar surroundings north of the border.
The players have been put through their paces on the famous West Sands in St Andrews, which has been their base for training camp for the last three years.
And 32-year-old Antonio said: "It's a good omen for us that we're here again! If it isn't broken, why fix it?!
"Hopefully now we're back here again we can have a good season and continue to build.
"We had good results in the Premier League and Europe last year and that gives us extra motivation to go better again.
"It was our first season in Europe and we managed to get to the semi-finals [of the UEFA Europa League] which was a massive achievement. A lot of people would never have thought we’d have got there, so hopefully we can go again and push on.
"The hardest thing in football is consistency and being able to keep the levels up and keep pushing on. That’s what we’ve been able to do these last couple of years and that’s what we want to keep on doing."