West Ham rumours

Slaven Bilic has two games to save his job

Author: . Published: at 3:16pm

Slaven Bilic has two games to save his job as West Ham lose patience with their manager. Bilic has to deliver in the Premier League matches against Crystal Palace and Middlesbrough or he will be dumped by the frustrated Hammers board.

A three match winning run in December saw West Ham climb away from the relegation zone but two straight league defeats have followed. But more worrying for the club’s board has been the alarming way his team have caved in when they have conceded five goals against Arsenal and City over the past month. In both matches the side has collapsed and shown a worrying lack of character and commitment.

Co-owners David Sullivan and David Gold along with vice-chairman Karren Brady are losing patience with the way the side have struggled compared to last season with the same players available. They are worried Bilic has lost the ability to motivate his squad and are concerned after hearing stories of a lack of focus and quality in training.

While earlier in the campaign the team were beset by injuries to key players, Bilic has been able to work with a largely full-strength group for the past two months. And there has been no obvious up-turn in performances from the side since then, which has left the Hammers board mystified as to what has gone wrong.

Palace visit the Olympic Stadium next week with former boss Sam Allardyce keen to put one over his old club.A trip to struggling Middlesbrough then follows – and Bilic will be on his way out if results and form are not delivered.

Brady was even forced to take to Twitter on Saturday morning under growing criticism from West Ham fans over what has happened this season. She said: “The whole board know last night’s performance ws not good enough, we know we have to improve. Palace and Boro now vital games.

“We lost no key players from last season and we struggle to understand why team is underpeforming, but urge every supporter to get behind team and manager.

“We know it is hard to take positives out of last night but we believe the manager and the players will sort it out for next week.” www.thesun.co.uk/sport

So, if this report is to be believed, our current boss is yet again under pressure to keep his job. Clearly something has gone drastically wrong this season and no-one has yet found the answer to what that is. There are of course many theories as to what has gone wrong;

  • Poor summer recruitment,
  • Over-achievement last season,
  • Players thinking they have made it already,
  • Injuries,
  • Undelivered promises from the board,
  • The new stadium move,
  • Bilic always being a one season wonder as a manager,
  • Payet wanting out,
  • Poor tactical thinking by the manager,
  • Antonio being thought of as a RB/ RWB.

I’m sure there are many more things to add to this list. But just looking at the above, it’s not hard to see why we are struggling for any find of consistent form. Just look at the amount of goals we are shipping. It is ridiculous! Especially the heavy defeats. I don’t believe that the board will sack Slaven and it would be a shame if they did because most seem to genuinely like the man. A comment I recently saw online made me think. It said ‘Bilic reminds me a lot of Gianfranco Zola’. I think that assessment is spot on actually. Zola was quite well liked when he first arrived. He was happy and truthful. He had a fairly decent start, but then it all went wrong. We were losing, He looked drained and tired, he started losing his hair, he lost his sparkle…..Are you seeing any comparisons here?

I do not believe that we will be relegated this season. But I do think we may just limp along to close to the relegation zone seeing out a disappointing season. Whether we show any signs of recovery and fight will be interesting to see. I am hopeful, but not optimistic.

What do you think? Do you still ‘trust in Slav’? What has gone wrong with our season? What do you think needs to happen? New boss? New players? How can we fix our problems. Thanks for reading 🙂

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  • Paul
    7th January 2017 at 3:45 pm

    I believe its a managerial issue. The squad looks okay to me. Its just poorly organised, lacks motivation and energy and no real tactics designed to defend or score goals. The midfield seems hollowed out this year with huge gaps in the middle. It is down to Slaven and i hope he can learn from experience but its not looking good. He left Besitkas in 13th place when he came to West Ham, they won the league the following year. He needs help at this juncture to relieve the pressure.

  • TheQuietMan
    7th January 2017 at 6:36 pm

    For me it’s a case of too much too soon. The mive to the new stadium, injuries, the promises of a big name striker that never came then the European exit, the mistake of trying to make Antonio a RB & the way the board have continually talked about his contract extention putting preasure on him to succed have all took the toll on Bilic.
    It’s not just Bilic the finger should be pointed at, the board & the players too! The players are all experienced they have been round the block enough to know when to pull together & play as a team but they don’t! They give up, despite having the captain supposedly leading them.

  • 7th January 2017 at 10:52 pm

    Confidence in sport is critical, and lacking in confidence can be highly contagious. Even Payet has experienced a drop in self confidence, purpose and creativity. Hard decisions have been avoided ie moving on from Noble (he is not playing , thinking or leading at the required level), Carol is a liability if only because of the limited number of games he can play in a campaign. I believe we play better with Adrian – this is not a criticism of Randolph, just an observation. We failed miserably to recruit well, too many leaks about the big names we wanted to bring in, and how the younger players must despair when they see how many opportunities ZaZa, Faghouli and co have been given. Needs a shake up.

  • 8th January 2017 at 6:37 pm

    The writing was on the wall in that 20 goals were conceded in the last 10 games of last season .. and no improvements were made to defence or CDM during the summer (Nordveit lacks pace and basic defensive positioning / awareness, as exposed by Rashford, in addition to not being all that great on the ball – You pay peanuts you get monkeys) .. Tompkins was sold and thus secured Ogbonna’s place in the team .. Ogbonna to me is on his heels too much .. He always seems to get there a fraction too late as a result .. The penalty he conceded at Palace is a prime example .. How many times did Reid save us on Friday v How many times did Ogbonna save us? (I rest my case) .. This leaky defence now has a much bigger pitch to defend on .. which was exposed by no less than Astra Giurgiu back in the summer .. and the bigger pitch is exposing the fact that our CDMs are not out and out CDMs .. This is not an excuse for a forward player being paid a fortune, but you can understand a forwards frustration at the number of goals being conceded at the other end and the ease with which some of them are being scored .. We have 4 home wins in the premier League, all 1-0s .. and the (poor) opposition we beat could think themselves a bit unlucky in all 4 .. I hope the players did not think it was job done in that little 10 points in 4 game sequence .. “You can now concentrate on the league” needs to mean just that .. and I hope they will not be rewarded for failure with a training camp in Dubai during the free time they will not be playing in the FA Cup 4th Round! .. These next two are huge games and the players had better be thinking that too! ..

  • Bob
    14th January 2017 at 2:12 am

    How is he still in a job? The man is a total fraud.

    How many players has he alienated in a season and a half?

    Morgan
    Jenskinson
    Arbeloa
    Sakho
    Etc

    Now Payet. This should have been dealt with behind closed doors but this prick throws him under the bus in a ridiculous mind game to try and shame him.