Andy Carroll hopes he can put his injury spell behind him and re-establish himself as a regular starter in Sam Allardyce’s start XI.
The former Liverpool striker made his first appearance of the season over the weekend as he came off the bench to feature in the 0-0 draw against Aston Villa following a long absence after an ankle surgery in summer.
And Carroll, who joined West Ham United in June last year, admits his desire to restart his surge at Upton Park.
“It’s obviously a great feeling to be back on the pitch where I think I belong,” he said.
“It’s better than being in the gym.
“It’s been a nightmare. It’s been a killer to be honest, coming back from the end of last season and in the first week of training I find out I need surgery.
“It’s been disappointing and devastating and now I’ve just got to forget about everything that’s been going on for the last few months.”
The England striker also praised the medical team at West Ham.
“The medical staff have been a great help,” Carroll added.
“I’ve been working with them as a team and individually. We’ve worked outside of the club as well and they’ve been coming to my house.
“It’s a credit to them to get me back fit so quickly given the injury and the surgery that I had. They’ve got me back as quick as possible and I’m happy with my recovery.”
Regarding the time he’ll have during the international break, Carroll said: “It’s a chance for me with no games to train hard - and harder than I have been ahead of the games coming up in a couple of weeks’ time.
“Hopefully I’ll have a game behind closed doors so I can get my fitness up in that as well.”