February 21, 2019 / 3:35 AM / 4 months ago

Soccer: Lanzini's return can make a difference for West Ham: Pellegrini

Soccer Football - Premier League - West Ham United vs Everton - London Stadium, London, Britain - May 13, 2018 West Ham United's Manuel Lanzini celebrates scoring their third goal Action Images via Reuters/Paul Childs

(Reuters) - Midfielder Manuel Lanzini’s return from a knee injury will provide West Ham United with the creative spark they need, manager Manuel Pellegrini has said.

Lanzini has not played since rupturing an anterior cruciate ligament in training with Argentina last June, which caused him to miss the World Cup in Russia.

The 26-year-old could be named in the squad for Friday’s London derby against Fulham, said Pellegrini.

“I think Manuel Lanzini for every manager would be a player that makes a difference,” Pellegrini told West Ham’s website.

“Seeing Manuel working during the last two weeks, for me I am confident that he will return in a very good shape because he is not afraid.”

West Ham are 10th in the Premier League standings while Fulham, who have not won an away game in the league this season, are 19th.

Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford

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