Michail Antonio Profile
|Born||Mar 28, 1990|
Michail Antonio has had a career full of ups and downs, however he has finally found his place, leading the line at West Ham United.
Michail Antonio is a Jamaican professional soccer player who plays as striker for West Ham United in the Premier League.
Beginning his career at non-league side Tooting and Mitcham, then Reading, followed by a number of loan moves, the forward hasn't had the easiest of journeys.
However, Antonio eventually found his feet at Sheffield Wednesday, signing for them permanently in 2012. After spending two years in Sheffield and a move to Nottingham Forest later, the then winger earned himself a move to Premier League side West Ham United.
After six years in east London, where he converted to a striker, Antonio wrote himself into the West Ham history books, becoming their record Premier League goal scorer.
Loan after loan after loan
After progressing through the ranks at Tooting and Mitcham from the age of 12, Antonio made his professional debut aged 18 in a 3-0 victory over Wealdstone, a game he scored in.
Antonio scored four goals in four games for the part-time club, and quickly earned himself a professional contract at EFL side Reading in 2008.
However, the move to the Football League wasn't plain sailing and Antonio was loaned out to five different clubs over the next four seasons, including a return to Tooting and Mitcham, Cheltenham Town and Southampton.
Antonio scored in Southampton's 4-1 Football League Trophy Final over Carlisle, to claim his first piece of silverware. Although he had a positive impact on the side, he once again returned to Reading to be met with another loan move.
After a period with Colchester United, Antonio had a spell with Sheffield Wednesday which would turn out to be his great escape.
Sheffield Wednesday and Nottingham Forest
An emergency loan move to Sheffield Wednesday in 2012, would turn out to be a quite significant transfer.
In his 14 loan appearances for Wednesday, the forward achieved seven goal contributions, including his first two goals for the club against Bury.
Antonio proved his quality to play first team soccer for Sheffield Wednesday, earning himself a permanent four-year deal with the club.
In his first four games for the club in the 2012/13 campaign, Antonio produced four goal contributions in four games (one goal and three assists), proving his ability and talent to the Owl bosses.
He would eventually rack up eight goals and 11 assists in 42 appearances. A groin injury, picked up in a 2-0 defeat to Cardiff meant Antonio would miss the last nine games of the season.
After recovering, Antonio returned to first team football for the 2013/14 season. However, after only appearing 28 times he was sold to Nottingham Forest in August 2014.
Following a transfer fee of £1.5million, Antonio proved his worth early on in the campaign, claiming three goals and three assists in the opening five games.
After winning Championship Player of the Month for August, his goal contributions would continue throughout the season, reaching a high of 15 goals and 14 assists respectively.
His outstanding performances throughout the 14/15 season earned him the Nottingham Forest Player of the Year award.
His standout season caught the attention of Premier League clubs, with Forest rejecting a £4million bid from West Bromwich Albion, before accepting a £7million bid from West Ham United.
Record breaker at West Ham United
Antonio joined West Ham in September 2015 for a fee of £7million. In his first season he continued his scoring talents, netting for the Hammers for the first time in a 2-1 win over former club Southampton.
However, calf and hamstring injuries during the 2016/17 and 2017/18 seasons costed Antonio crucial game time and he struggled to build on improving his game, despite being named as Hammer of the Year in 2017.
Although Antonio had missed out on a majority of the previous campaign, he faired better in the 2018/19 season, making 38 appearance in all competitions, scoring seven.
The striker would improve on his previous goal tally the in Covid-19 hit season of 2019/20. He scored 10 from 26 in all competitions, including the first goal at the new Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and netting four times against Norwich.
Antonio was truly coming to himself, consistently performing in the Premier League with the Hammers. Another 10 goal season was around the corner as West Ham finished in a groundbreaking and European football clinching sixth in 2020/21.
He finished the season as the club's top scorer and continued that good form into the 2021/22 season. In August 2021, Antonio scored twice against Leicester City to break Paolo Di Canio's record of 47 Premier League goals for the club, bringing his own total to 49.
With the dream to play for England, Antonio originally rejected his Jamaican roots and strived to play for the Three Lions.
However, after only achieving a call up to the senior side and no minutes on the pitch, Antonio switched citizenship.
The striker was approached once more by Jamaica, and with the dream to take them to the 2022 World Cup, Antonio would choose his family roots.
Antonio is married to his Debbie Whittle, the couple have four children, two boys and two girls.
During his childhood, Antonio was involved in gang culture, raised within the London Borough of Wandsworth. Soccer ended that lifestyle.
His family roots trace back to Jamaica, with both his mother and father originating from there.
Michail Antonio's net worth is reported to be £17million.