By Danny Wright
West Ham manager Slaven Bilic has said that he had no choice but to reveal all the details about Dimitri Payet’s transfer request to leave the club.
The Croatian manager revealed earlier in the month that the 29-year-old attacker no longer wanted to play for the club.
Payet was subsequently left out of the West Ham squad when they ran out emphatic 3-0 victors over Crystal Palace last week.
Now, in his column for the London Evening Standard, Bilic has explained to fans that he had to do it in order to look after his squad.
“I understand that the supporters want to know what is happening with Dimitri Payet but there isn’t much more to say,” told Bilic to the Standard.
“I am disappointed and sad that it has happened this way and there are no winners.
“I know that by far the best way to solve these things is in-house. I kept a lid on things for as long as possible but you have to draw the line.
“I tried to solve it but it came to the stage where I had to act, not to defend myself or my ego but I had to protect the team.”
The Frenchman only signed for the Hammers at the beginning of last season, but he has become an immediate star with the east London side.
The attacker has scored 18 goals and provided 25 assists in 66 appearances for West Ham and was also awarded a new contract worth £125,000-a-week.
However, it would seem that Payet and his family have not settled well in England and a return to Marseille would appear to be his favoured destination.
Football Insider Verdict
Something has to happen to Dimitri Payet this month and whatever happens it probably won’t be ideal for all parties concerned, especially the fans. They have three options; sell him, keep him and play him or keep him and don’t play him. As long as the Hammers can replace Payet then there shouldn’t be much of an issue if they were to sell him, although the Hammers’ recruitment wasn’t the best in the last transfer window, but Bilic doesn’t seem the type that would bow down to ‘player power’. After all, they did manage to routinely see off Crystal Palace last week.
In other West Ham transfer news, Hammers close in on 23-year-old striker deal with La Liga Side.