English Premiership

Byram admits to Bilic talks

Slaven Bilic (Getty Images)
Slaven Bilic (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Full back Sam Byram has said he was lured to West Ham United after talks with manager Slaven Bilic convinced him that a move to Upton Park would take his game to the next level.

After reported interest from both Everton and West Ham for the 22-year-old Englishman, Byram opted to join the Hammers from second tier Leeds United on a four-and-a-half year deal last week.

The right back made an impressive debut in Saturday's 2-2 Premier League draw with Manchester City after he came off the bench in the 13th minute to replace an injured Carl Jenkinson.

"There were a number of things (that led to him joining West Ham). I spoke to the manager... and how he could improve me was the main thing," Byram told British media.

"As a young player, the main thing you want to do is get better. He'd identified the areas he thinks I can improve on and explained how he would help me improve on them."

Having made the step up to the top flight, Byram said he was ready for the challenge but admitted to be slightly in awe of his new team-mates.

"The quality of players in the squad. In training, I've been blown away by some of the things some of them do in training," he said.

"Stepping up to this level is only going to make me better. I'm really looking forward to the challenge."

West Ham, who are sixth in the table, travel to Anfield to take on Premier League rivals Liverpool in the fourth round of the FA Cup on Saturday.