Mikhail Antonio’s dance social gathering, which will likely be remembered on the report evening for West Ham
“I wanted to be a baby, but I weigh 94 kg” – Antonio on his Dirty Dancing inspired celebration
Mikhail Antonio tops the list of West Ham Premier League scorers – so it was fitting that he danced with himself under the lights of the London stadium on Monday.
After his 48th goal in the top division for the Hammers in a 4-1 win against Leicester, the striker celebrated Paolo di Canio’s record by waltzing, lifting and kissing a cardboard cutout from Mikhail Antonio.
It was a Hollywood moment for a player who wore the number nine jersey this summer and will now go down in West Ham folklore for his goalscoring efforts.
“We had a chat earlier this week and I said, ‘Do you know what the best party will be? Save the last dance,'” said Antonio, who expanded his record to 49 goals with the fourth of the evening.
“Maybe someone could pick me up like baby?
Delirious about becoming a record breaker, he can be forgiven for some confusion, but Antonio may have mixed up his dance films – Baby and the Iconic Elevator are from the 1980s blockbuster Dirty Dancing rather than 2001 Save The Last Dance.
Whichever film was the inspiration, its manager David Moyes was stunned by the festivities.
“It’s not something I’m keen on,” he said.
|49 – Mikhail Antonio|
|47 – Paolo di Canio|
|46 – Mark Noble|
|41 – Carlton Cole|
|37 – Trevor Sinclair|
|33 – Andy Carroll|
|29 – Frederic Kanoute|
|24 – John Hartson|
|24 – Frank Lampard|
|23 – Tony Cottee|
Although the former Manchester United manager was happier with Antonio’s performance.
“I’m really happy,” said Moyes. “I was disappointed with the way he played in the first half but he did enough to silence the coach after I told him about half time.”
The 31-year-old’s two goals, both in the last 10 minutes, were outstanding. The first he spun Caglar Soyuncu before coming home, and the second he tossed the ball over two defenders before stabbing home.
“Michail Antonio was unplayable,” said BBC Radio 5 Live’s Chris Sutton, who was at the London Stadium. “That was a masterclass. It was the perfect performance of the center forward.”
Antonio said: “It sounds nice to be West Ham’s top scorer in the Premier League. I feel like it affected my style of play in the first half but the gaffer hit me at half time and I played normally and scored my goals. ” “
West Ham 4-1 Leicester: David Moyes praises Mikhail Antonio on “incredible night”
The “Football Didn’t Start in 1992” crew would like us to point out that Antonio’s record is only for the Premier League era. Vic Watson scored 298 league goals for West Ham between 1920-1935 (326 in all competitions).
Geoff Hurst scored 180 league goals (249 in all competitions) with several other players topping the 100 mark. Antonio has 51 goals in all competitions for West Ham.
He was West Ham’s best – or joint top scorer – in each of the last two seasons and in 2016-17. He’s had more shots (11) than anyone in the Premier League this season.
Many strikers have come and gone during this period, including Jordan Hugill, Albian Ajeti, Lucas Perez, Sebastien Haller, Javier Hernandez and Marko Arnautovic.
Antonio’s performances are even better when you look at his football trip.
He did not play international football at any level and began his career with Tooting & Mitcham United in the Isthmian League Premier Division.
He joined West Ham in 2015 as a winger from Nottingham Forest – and finished his first season at the club as a right-back.
“I’m never happy to score just one goal,” he said. “I don’t want anyone to catch me walking out of here. I want to be up there in folklore forever. “