Text  Larger | Smaller | Default


Sullivan didn't even know who Lanzini was!

Filed: Saturday, 16th December 2017
By: Staff Writer

Former Hammers boss Slaven Bilic has hit back at co-owner David Sullivan after the owner insinuated that he was responsible for signing West Ham's best players during his tenure.

Bilic, speaking to the media for the first time since getting sacked by West Ham accused the co-chairman of embellishing the truth in a recent interview he gave with the Guardian's Jacob Steinberg.

Embed from Getty Images

In it, Sullivan insisted that Bilic "had a policy of wanting older, proven Premier League players", adding that "Iím very involved with physically bringing in the players" - in which he included the signing of the Argentine international.

However Bilic laughed off Sullivan's claim in an interview with the Daily Mail - insisting that Sullivan didn't even know who Lanzini was when the manager suggested his capture.

"I donít want to praise myself but if you ask about Lanzini, I knew about him since he was at River Plate a few years ago," said Bilic. "I wanted to take him to Besiktas. At that time, he was too much money and went to Al Jazira.

"Who knew about Lanzini before he came to England? Nobody knew and that includes the chairman. But I never treated the signings like that, like they are my players or your players. No, they were all our players, collective responsibility.

"There were three of us: the chairman, myself and Tony Henry. Agents would call any of us and we shared the information. I knew about Payet for a long time. The chairman told me heíd had a call about a player from Marseille. I asked 'which one?' and he said Payet. I said, 'Yes, donít think twice'."

Embed from Getty Images

Bilic also criticised Sullivan for criticising the signings of Jose Fonte from Southampton and Robert Snodgrass from Hull City, who arrived a year ago this month for a combined fee of £18million. "I am not going to take credit for everything but I donít want to take all the blame either.," he added.

"Fonte and Snodgrass came in January. We were losing Payet and Ogbonna was having an operation, and of course the budget was limited. So we got those two new players. To criticise them is unfair.

"They came to a club in a difficult situation and helped us finish 11th so they played their part."

Bilic, who is still living in Docklands added that is keen to return to management, less than two months after leaving West Ham. An offer from West Bromwich Albion to succeed Tony Pulis was rejected.

Related News

   arrow   Hernandez agrees personal terms [15th Jan 2019]
   arrow   No season review DVD, say West Ham [11th Jan 2019]
   arrow   Post-match press conference: Manuel Pellegrini v Crystal Palace [audio] [9th Dec 2018]
   arrow   Dicks returns to the dugout [4th Oct 2018]
   arrow   Bilic returns to management [28th Sep 2018]
   arrow   No change yet, despite major investment [18th Sep 2018]
   arrow   In brief - Thursday's news round-up [13th Sep 2018]
   arrow   No problems with Rush Green, insists Pelle [5th Sep 2018]
   arrow   We were ill-prepared under Bilic, says Noble [video] [10th Aug 2018]
   arrow   Hernandez backs Pellegrini to be a success [10th Aug 2018]

Your Comments

Please note that this section is for comments relating to the above news item only. Any off-topic or abusive posts will be removed. Posts including either links and/or foul language are automatically filtered and will not be published. To engage in further discussion on any of our news stories, visit the KUMB Forums.

Not a member of the KUMB Forums? You may register for free membership here.

comments powered by Disqus
News Image

On This Day ...

One Year Ago
Cole, Hurst, Collison & Zabaleta: Tuesday's news
Get the very latest West Ham news in one place, with our new daily media ro...more
Three Years Ago
O'Brien to join Nolan revolution?
Popular full back Joey O'Brien looks set to leave West Ham within the next few days - with two clubs...more
Five Years Ago
And I'm looking for a miracle...
West Ham will need to emulate one of their most famous victories if they are to proceed to the final...more