One of the brightest stars of our summer football games has been a lively and tricky Norwegian 18-year-old, and the fans are loving what he’s had to offer so far. He dribbles around players with ease, passes well and constantly pushes forward, making him a dream addition to our squad, but who is this Martin Samuelsen kid, and should we expect to see him feature more this season?
West Ham’s official website has him listed as a first team player, but other than telling us his birthdate, information on the player is scarce. What we do know is that Samuelsen was born in Norway in April 1997, making him currently just 18 years old. He has previously represented Norway at U16, U17, and U18 levels and joined us from Manchester City on a contract that keeps him a Hammer until 2017 with an option to extend this for a further two years. A quick search on YouTube will provide some necessary background viewing and has clips of this youngster showing skill after skill as he narrowly and craftily weaves the ball around the legs of his opponents.
This kid can do tricks for days and it’s exciting to think that we’ve got a player with that type of potential on our books. He featured for us in our preseason matches against Peterborough and Southend, our Europa League match against FC Birkirkara, and scored a lovely goal against the aforementioned Peterborough. He’s a joy to watch in these games because he moves the ball around with ease, he’s constantly looking to go forward and has the skill to get there. His confidence is building by the game and he’s quickly becoming a fan favourite. He’s even already got his own chant – ‘there’s only one Justin Bieber!’ It remains to be seen whether or not we will see any first team action from Samuelsen once the Premier League season starts.
He’s certainly got the potential to play, but his confidence and strength may need to be built up further before bringing him into West Ham’s first team. His inclusion, of course, is also dependent on our injury list, but knowing how West Ham normally fare in that area, I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see him on the bench come the second half of the season. One thing’s for sure, Samuelsen has a bright future in front of him and I’m thrilled he is going to experience it as a Hammer.