London: David Moyes has left West Ham following the end of his short-term contract, the Premier League club announced yesterday. The 55-year-old former Everton and Manchester United boss arrived at the London Stadium in November, with the sole objective of ensuring the Hammers’ top-flight status, which he achieved.
“I would like to place on record my sincere thanks to David Moyes and his staff for achieving the target of keeping West Ham United in the Premier League,” said joint chairman David Sullivan. “When David and his team arrived, it was the wish of both parties that the focus be only on the six months until the end of the season, at which point a decision would be made with regards to the future,” he added. “Having taken stock of the situation and reflected now the campaign is complete, we feel that it is right to move in a different direction.”
Sullivan said the club, who finished 13th in the Premier League, aim to appoint a “high-calibre” successor within the next 10 days. The announcement on Moyes came barely 12 hours after David Gold, West Ham’s co-owner, said he hoped Moyes would remain in charge for next season.
Reports this week said West Ham had held “productive” talks with Paulo Fonseca, the manager of Shakhtar Donetsk, while Sullivan remains a long-term admirer of Newcastle’s Rafael Benitez. Former Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini, currently with Hebei China Fortune, and outgoing Paris St-Germain coach Unai Emery have also been linked with the role.
Moyes succeeded Slaven Bilic in November, when West Ham were in the relegation zone, and guided the team to safety. Speaking after West Ham’s recent draw against Manchester United, he said staying in the Premier League was a “big achievement”.
“We had to get the players in order a little bit after we came in, and we have done that,” he said. “This is a big club and there are big expectations from the supporters so they will need to improve.”
Moyes managed Everton for 11 years from 2002 before leaving the club to replace Alex Ferguson at United but was dismissed after just 10 months in charge. He also had a disappointing stint in Spain with Real Sociedad.
West Ham’s statement came just hours after Everton announced the sacking of Sam Allardyce.
Allardyce was just six months in charge and guided the Premier League club away from relegation danger to a mid-table finish. The former England manager, 63, was brought in as Ronald Koeman’s replacement in November, but his rudimentary style of play has proved deeply unpopular with fans of the Merseyside club.
“We have made the decision that, as part of our longer-term plan, we will be appointing a new manager this summer,” said new chief executive Denise Barrett-Baxendale. “On behalf of the chairman, board of directors and Mr Moshiri, I’d like to thank Sam for the job he has done at Everton. Sam was brought in at a challenging time last season to provide us with some stability and we are grateful to him for doing that,” she added.
Former Watford and Hull City manager Marco Silva is the favourite to take over and could complete the move to Goodison Park six months after the club failed to prise him away from Vicarage Road. Despite signing an 18-month deal, Allardyce appeared resigned to his fate after Sunday’s 3-1 defeat at former club West Ham, during which Everton supporters called for his sacking.
“I can’t quite say confident after all the rumours I’m reading in the paper,” said Allardyce, when questioned about his future. “Generally there’s no smoke without fire. We’ll wait and see when we meet up.”
Allardyce last month dismissed a survey sent to supporters asking them to grade his performance out of 10 as a mistake on the part of the club’s marketing director, who he said does not “understand” how football works. As part of the questionnaire, supporters were asked whether they agree with the statement: “I have a high level of trust in the current manager and coaching staff at Everton e.g. in making the right decisions to get the best out of the team.”
Allardyce, whose previous clubs include Bolton, Newcastle, Sunderland and Crystal Palace, landed his dream job with England in 2016 but that turned sour after only one match, with Allardyce stepping down following a newspaper sting.
Everton were unwilling to pay a reported compensation fee of £15mn ($20mn) wanted by Watford for Silva when Koeman was sacked. However, Silva himself was then dismissed by Watford in January with the Hornets citing disruption caused by Everton’s “unwarranted approach” for a major dip in form.
A change in manager could also affect Wayne Rooney’s future at the club. England’s all-time top scorer had reportedly agreed terms on a £12.5mn move to DC United in Major League Soccer last week. Rooney had seen his involvement limited under Allardyce, but could be convinced to stay at his boyhood club by a new regime.
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