Toni Martinez has been the name on the majority of West Ham United fans’ lips this season, despite the 20-year-old not being part of the first team.
The Spanish forward caught the eye quickly by excelling in the club’s development side.
The youngster only joined the Premier League outfit in 2016, but supporters have been calling for a first-team start for a while.
This season, former manager Slaven Bilic opted against giving the forward a chance, while current boss David Moyes seems to be taking a patient approach with youth.
Over the weekend, though, Martinez eventually made his debut when he came on as a substitute in Saturday’s FA Cup third-round tie against Shrewsbury Town.
The Spaniard replaced Javier Hernandez in the 71st minute, but he was unable to affect the scoreline as the match ended in a goalless draw.
Even though fans were frustrated by the result, many were pleased to see Martinez get some minutes.
Some, though, are baffled that it has taken this long for the youngster to be given an opportunity.
he should have started would have done better then Hernandez
— Aaron waters (@AaronWaters44) January 7, 2018
Waaaay overdue. Also would have liked 2 have seen him & chicha play together today tbh
— eloise (make chester proud) (@el_Jade_p) January 7, 2018
martinez needs more game time, would love to see him play alongside big Ac
— nigel bunning (@yorkyhammer) January 7, 2018
Congrats @AntonioMtnez_29 👏🏼 Fantastic effort, soon come the goals ⚽️⚽️⚽️
— Gareth Pownall ⚒ (@_Gpownall14) January 7, 2018
Should have been given a chance long before now
— andy stuart (@andystuart2) January 7, 2018
Looked like you tried more game time hopefully
— Dave Hooper (@Hooperdave88) January 7, 2018
Hopefully lots more games and goals to come, great prospect
— Andy Playle (@Andy_Playle) January 7, 2018
First of many appearances, #highhopes
— Stuart Hewett (@Stunaldo) January 7, 2018