West Ham deliver emphatic statement on Bilic future
By Matt Farr
West Ham have handed under-pressure manager Slaven Bilic a vote of confidence despite the club’s disaster campaign entering free-fall once again.
The Hammers board issued a statement on the club’s official website on Sunday following the defeat to Hull backing the 48-year-old to turn their fortunes around.
Bilic has seen the pressure continue to mount over his long-term future after a run of form that has left West Ham without a win in their last six Premier League games.
Meanwhile, the defeat to Hull saw them slip to within just six points of the relegation zone, re-igniting fears that they could slip into a relegation battle in the final eight games of the season.
However, the board have handed Bilic their unanimous support in an emphatic statement that is likely to divide opinion from West Ham supporters.
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They said: “To end speculation once and for all, the West Ham United board feel it necessary to announce that we have 100 per cent faith in Slaven Bilic’s ability to lead West Ham United.
“Despite press speculation to the contrary, the manager’s position is not under threat. The Board know that Slaven and his coaching staff have the full backing of the playing squad and the overwhelming majority of supporters to lead West Ham United out of this difficult spell.
“The Board now urge all supporters to unite behind the manager, his staff and the squad as we go into some important games. We have complete confidence in their ability to end a testing run of results and finish the season on a high.”
West Ham have been faced with endless problems since the start of the season, amplified by the move from Upton Park to the London Stadium.
The Premier League outfit have struggled to adapt to their new surroundings, which has seemingly taken its toll on the players and results, thus increasing the pressure on the manager.
Meanwhile, a number of Bilic’s transfer decisions have been met with derision by fans, with several of his summer signings having flopped this season.
Aside from the circumstances, the sale of Dimitri Payet was also a major turning point for the club, and they have won just one of their eight Premier League games since his departure.
Each incident has added to the frustrations of the West Ham fans, but the board does not appear to share their views by coming out in full support of the under-fire chief.
In other West Ham news, here is how fans reacted on Twitter as Payet scored a stunning free kick for Marseille on Saturday.