West Ham's club-record signing Felipe Anderson has claimed he is looking forward to the challenges ahead of life in the Premier League with West Ham, after making a £36 million switch from Italian outfit Lazio.
The Brazilian playmaker has stated that he does not feel the pressure to perform, although he understands the significance behind his large transfer fee and what the fans will be expecting of him this season.
Speaking with The Mirror, the 25-year-old is confident that he will be able to adapt quickly to the high paced nature of the Premier League, as he looks to become a firm fan favourite at the club.
“I’m ready for all challenges.” Anderson said. “I can accept what being a record signing means to West Ham fans and the opposition, but it excites me.
“In Italy it was more about the technical side of the game. Here I understand it is faster and tougher. But I spoke to my great friend Willian and he urged me to come here and enjoy what the Premier League has to offer. He said it has made him a better player.”
Anderson endured a difficult time at former club Lazio last season, as injuries forced his talents to fall down the pecking order. Despite this, the Brazilian still managed to rack up four goals and seven assists in a little over 1000 minutes of action.
"The pressure of the fee does not bother me."
“I was in Italy for a time and I was able to grow as a player and grow as a man as well.” Anderson continued. “I still have ways to go but that’s what I want to do while I am here.
“In Brazil you have to be a certain age to play in an academy, so I started playing when I was very young, and I was playing in the street until I was 11 because I couldn’t join an academy.
“I started to play on dirt pitches and then on grass. When I turned 13, I joined Santos in a more professional atmosphere.”
“The pressure of the fee does not bother me. It’s a big responsibility because it shows that the club believe in me. It comes with the game.
“I have heard about Bobby Moore, Paolo Di Canio, Carlos Tevez and many more here. I want to be like them.”
Anderson has a lot to prove to West Ham fans if he is to join the ranks of players such as these, but there is little doubt that the Brazil international has the talent and desire to make his mark at the club for a while to come.