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Bilic: the KUMB writers' view

Filed: Wednesday, 10th June 2015
By: Staff Writer

On the day that Slaven Bilic was appointed as the new manager of West Ham United, we asked the KUMB Writers for their views on the appointment.

Here's what KUMB stalwarts Matthew Kemp, Elliot Pollard and Paul Walker had to say...

So the best kept secret has finally been announced, with Slaven Bilic being named manager of West Ham United. For the regular KUMB readers you will recall I predicted this on Thursday, 9 April in my article about Sam Allardyce:

"Slaven Bilic has reportedly bought a place in London, and his contract expires this summer. If I was a betting man, it will be Slaven in the hot seat this summer. With a remote chance of European football next season via the Fair Play ruling, his first game in charge may come as early as 2nd July!"

And I followed this up on 4 June with an article about Slaven Bilic.

Bilic's success will be defined by the board backing him financially, and giving him the final decision over the team. David Sullivan has already stated earlier today that the club hope to sign five or six players in the next few months. One of these players may be another ex-Hammer, Demba Ba!

It is important that the manager appoints the right backroom staff to support him for what will be the clubs final season at Upton Park. Our new manager is rated as the 53rd best coach in the world with a win percentage of 55.16 per cent, whilst Sam Allardyce was 114th. So based on statistics alone, the appointment is a step in the right direction.

As mentioned in the past, Bilic has blooded youngsters from the Croatia U-21 team into the national team, which bodes well for the likes of Reece Burke and Reece Oxford. Let's all get behind Slaven and the team, as we enter a new era.

- Matthew Kemp

The appointment of Slaven Bilic feels like a very wise move by the chairman, and the best available option on the market. Although speculation suggests he may not have been the owners' first choice, I think most fans would agree he is the right man to carry West Ham forward.

A key element of this is his passion and his previous relationship with the club which will allow the fans to really get behind him and the team, something thatís been a real problem in recent appointments (Allardyce, Avram etc).

The only concern I have with the appointment of the Croatian is his fondness of the 4-2-3-1 formation used at Besiktas, which I think our current squad would struggle to adapt to due to the lack of creative/wide players.

Having said that, Bilic did use the more favourable 4-4-2 formation as Croatia manager when his team dumped England's Three Lions out of the European Championship qualifiers, and later created a formidable ďbig man little manĒ strike partnership with Mandzukic and Olic; letís hope he can do the same with Carroll and Valencia!

I am very happy with the appointment and I canít wait to see the players the club brings in over the summer!

- Elliot Pollard

It's a good appointment. We were never going to get the Champions League level managers, they just used us to get better contracts or better clubs (Benitez). Slav is a gamble, but then any manager is a gamble - even Rafa at Madrid.

Bilic knows the club and will inject passion and effort into the team. Sam's men will be history and he will attract better players. He is about the best bet of new young managers outside the Champions League bubble.

He will do ok and the fans will be on his side - not like the final months of Sam where three wins in 21 league games was a disgrace (although there is no certainty he could have addressed that with the open conflict with Sullivan and his agent mates).

I believe Slav is represented by Pini Zahavi, who works with Barry Silkman and David Sullivan already. These things matter - and it is the end of Mark Curtis in control at West Ham.

I can't wait to see it in action and it should give everyone a lift after such a downbeat, sour end to the last campaign.

- Paul Walker

Please note that the opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, nor should be attributed to, KUMB.com.

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