West Ham manager David Moyes refuted claims that Javier Hernandez will leave this month and insists the striker has a crucial role to play.
The Mexico international joined West Ham from Bayer Leverkusen over the summer but he struggled to settle under previous boss Slaven Bilic.
Hernandez found his starting opportunities limited under the Croatian and as a result his form suffered as he failed to chip in with goals on a regular basis.
However, he has been handed more of a chance to impress following the appointment of Moyes and he repaid his manager’s faith on Saturday by netting for the first time since October in the 1-1 draw with Bournemouth at the London Stadium.
The former Manchester United and Real Madrid striker has been linked with a move away from the Hammers this month but Moyes insists he has a big role to play as they look to continue on a positive path.
Moyes said: “Well, there’s speculation about Chicharito. But there’s been speculation about Andy Carroll, Diafra Sakho… about every man and their dog here really.
“We need Chicharito. The sort of goal he got today might be typical. So we need to try to get a lot more balls in the box.
“And hopefully he’s going to score a lot more goals for us in the weeks and months.”
West Ham can be backed at 2.40 to claim victory in their next Premier League outing when the host Crystal Palace, who are priced at 3.00 to come out on top, while the draw is available at 3.40.