Midfielder Cullen hoping to catch the eye of West Ham coaching staff
PUBLISHED: 18:00 17 August 2018
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The 22-year-old played for the under-23s on Monday night and wants to keep his match fitness up
Josh Cullen wants to keep impressing the staff at West Ham United and if that means playing more under-23 games for the club, he will continue to do so.
The midfielder played the full 90 minutes on Monday night and helped the Hammers win 3-1 at Tottenham Hotspur to start their Premier League 2 campaign with a win.
He performed well at Broadhall Way in front of West Ham director of football Mario Husillos and Ruben Fuse, Manuel Pellegrini’s assistant manager, and wants to keep catching the eye.
Cullen said: “I wanted to come and play to keep my match fitness up. You can train as much as you want, but you can’t really replicate the fitness to complete 90 minutes.
“I wanted to come and get fit and hopefully, if they (assistant and director of football) are watching, impress and I want to keep impressing in training and be ready and be as fit as possible if a chance in the first-team comes my way.”
On Monday night, Cullen played alongside new West Ham signing Xande Silva and the forward made an immediate impression.
He netted a quick-fire hat-trick – equalising on the stroke of half time and then adding two more goals to his tally early in the second half.
“I am delighted for Xande and he couldn’t have wished for a better start – a hat-trick on his debut,” Cullen said.
“Full credit to him, but I felt all the lads put a good shift in and it is Manchester City on Sunday now. It will be another tough test, but I am sure we’ll be ready for it.”
If Cullen isn’t involved in the first-team match with AFC Bournemouth on Saturday at the London Stadium, he will most likely link up with the under-23s.
West Ham will take on City at Dagenham & Redbridge’s Victoria Road on Sunday at 1pm for their second Premier League 2 fixture and another stern test is expected.
The 22-year-old, from Westcliff-on-Sea, would love to feature for the Hammers in the clash with the Cherries though, but even if he isn’t, he believes they can bounce back after the 4-0 loss at Liverpool last weekend.
Cullen added: “Going to Anfield, obviously Champions League finalists, on the first day of the season; it was never going to be easy.
“One of the goals was offside and there was a set-piece goal which could have been avoided, but it is what it is.
“We have to dust ourselves off and there is no point thinking about it now. We have Bournemouth coming up and it is a chance to put things right and get the Liverpool game out of our heads.”