Poyet relishing challenge

West Ham United new boy Diego Poyet is relishing the challenge of the Premier League after joining from Charlton Athletic.

The 19-year-old midfielder, who was a regular for England at U16 and U17 level, completed his move to Upton Park on Tuesday and he is now in France with his new team-mates at their pre-season training camp.

For one so young, his character has already been tested after overcoming a lengthy spell on the sidelines with an injury. But having fought back from that, he became a regular in the Addicks side in the second half of last season, and now he wants to push on and show what he can do at a higher level.

Poyet captained England U17s

Poyet captained England U17s

“It’s a great club to be at and I know a few of the boys here already. It was a no brainer to sign,” Poyet said.

“It’s massive to come to a Premier League club. It’s what I wanted to do – I wanted a new challenge and soon as I heard there was a chance of stepping up I had to take it.

“I played quite a few games last season with Charlton and I just want to push on now. Like any young player, the first thing you want to do is get into the first team. I need to show the staff, players and the gaffer what I’m capable of doing and maybe pushing my way in.”

He added: “I grew up at Charlton for seven years, so it’s a bit sad to leave, but as soon as I heard that West Ham – a great club with a lot of tradition, moving to a new stadium and everything – it was a no brainer for me because you never know if you’re going to get that kind of chance again.”

As well as forcing his way into the Hammers first-team, Poyet will no doubt be looking to break back into the England set-up. He has previously captained his country at U17 level, and he will be hoping that his performances will be enough to earn him a place alongside new team-mate Ravel Morrison in Gareth Southgate’s Under-21 squad.

His style of play should make him a big favourite with fans with his mix of combative tackling and silky passing skills, and he told West Ham TV that he cannot wait to show the West Ham faithful what he can do.

“I’m a defensive midfielder who likes to break up play, pass the ball around and get about the pitch.

“I like to help the defence as much as I can, do my job and help the team to win.

“We’ve got a game on Saturday [away to Stevenage], I don’t know when my first game will come but if I get a chance then, that’ll be brilliant. If not I’ll have to wait a little longer to get my opportunity.”