West Ham full back Daprela confident he can improve

Making your club debut at left back against Arsenal is truly a baptism of fire, but Fabio Daprela left the Boleyn Ground on Sunday with his reputation enhanced after a solid display

Making your club debut at left back against Arsenal is truly a baptism of fire, but Fabio Daprela left the Boleyn Ground on Sunday with his reputation enhanced after a solid display.

Marking highly-rated youngster Jack Wilshere, the Swiss defender looked comfortable throughout and his success against his adversary was completed when the ineffectual Arsenal midfielder was withdrawn midway through the second half.

And Daprela was also pleased with his own impressive display, as the full back often powered forward to try and support those further forward.

"Yes, I play like this (when asked about his forward-thinking approach). I like to go forward and I like to pass the ball short," he said.


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"Today was okay, I made two or three runs and that is okay for me for the first time. The first time I tried to pass, but for the second one, I wanted to shoot, but I was not so sure about it.

"I think I played okay. I can play better. The other players were helping me a lot and I just tried to play my normal game, so it was okay."

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Despite taking a first-half lead through an Alessandro Diamanti strike, West Ham were beaten 2-1 thanks to a late header from Eduardo and although obviously disappointed to be eliminated from the FA Cup, Daprela was keen to pay tribute to his team-mates.

"It was very nice to play against a team like Arsenal and I think the whole team put in a good performance. It was a great pity that we lost 2-1, but I am very happy to have played the match," he said before explaining that he only found out he was starting on the day of the game.

"We played so good and then we let in two stupid goals, but that happens. I am just happy to have played in the team."

His boss Gianfranco Zola was also satisfied with the performance.

"I take a lot of positives from this game. I must say that I have a team that's giving 100 per cent," he beamed.

"I know it was very close, but I'm pleased with the performance from the team and I couldn't ask for anything more. They gave everything.

"The difference is in the first 15 minutes of the second half, when we had the game in hand and had so many opportunities, we didn't manage to close the game down and in the last 10-15 minutes, when I knew we were going to go down physically because we worked so hard.

"Despite that they were very lucky in the first goal. The second goal was a brilliant goal, but the first goal was really lucky and that was the killer.

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