West Ham United have undergone huge changes this season following their move to the London Stadium last summer but further alterations could be on the horizon.
The Telegraph reports that the Hammers have decided not to hand manager Slaven Bilic an extension on his contract this summer, when he enters the final 12 months of his current deal, due to concerns about the club’s form.
After pushing for European football last season, West Ham have struggled to remain competitive in the current campaign and flirted with relegation prior to the New Year, before suffering a huge blow in January when Dimitri Payet pushed for a move to Marseille.
Whilst the Hammers have fought back, currently sat in mid-table, they’ve failed to reach their objectives this season and it’s left a lot of work to be done over the course of the summer.
Does Bilic deserve a new deal?
It’s difficult to argue that Bilic should earn an extension this summer as West Ham’s issues have to fall at someone’s feet. Whilst he deserves credit for turning things around and handling the Payet situation well, his transfers from last summer have hardly been inspirational.
Loanee Simeone Zaza struggled and is now gone and the rest of his £70m extravaganza haven’t helped West Ham push towards being regular contenders for European football and they could suffer as a result of this season, as they now face added competition with the likes of Everton and West Brom excelling this term.
Over the summer, Bilic will have work to do to ensure his side is competitive for next season and he’ll have a year to convince the board he’s still the best man for the job.
What does it mean for West Ham?
Right now, nothing. Bilic could still extend his stay in East London if he turns things around next season and the door has not been closed in that aspect. However, there is a danger of Bilic improving drastically next season and attracting the interest of another side- with the Hammers risking losing him in 2018.
They’ve got their eyes set on potential replacements though, one of which is Newcastle United’s Rafael Benitez, and they should be able to find a top-class manager next summer if it came to it. For now though, they’ll have to back their Croatian boss in the market this summer to ensure their troubles don’t continue.