Thursday, 16 December 2010

Bye bye Avram Grant

Avram Grant was a strange appointment at West Ham however you look at it. After the eventual split between Zola and Clarke, Gianfranco's time at Upton Park was limited and I thought the new owners, Gold & Sullivan, would move for a "West Ham" manager in search of a bit of stability.

Instead they chose Grant which baffled me. Grant was another non-West Ham man who, frankly, has a patchy CV. Mysteriously appointed at Chelsea to replace Jose Mourinho, the only link appeared to be his Jewish faith that he shares with Abramovic. Barely 18 months later he was paid off at Stamford Bridge but found another Premiership side prepared to pay his salary and he signed on at Fratton Park. He lasted 18 months at Pompey too and whilst he took them to F A Cup glory with a hugely expensive squad they bought on tick, he also took them down. Why then, was he seen as the ideal candidate to takeover at West Ham this year? It looked like an accident waiting to happen and sure enough the Hammers have been relegation candidates all season.

You could argue that it's hardly a surprise West Ham are struggling again and that Grant has not been given a fair crack of the whip. Trouble is, West Ham fans have known from early on that Grant was not the man to instil the spirit required to over-perform and turn their fortunes. 

I should point out that he's still the manager but he's on borrowed time and has reportedly been given three games in which to save his job. If the players know that, I suspect two more poor performances should be enough to see him shown the door. At that point you wonder what Gold & Sullivan will do next? They need to throw a double-six or they will be taking a huge financial bath on their West Ham "investment," the one they promised potential investors would return a dividend, just like they managed at Birmingham. 

Adrift at the bottom, the managerial hot-seat at West Ham at Christmas is not a genuine long-term prospect and the likely takers would be in the mould of the unemployed, desperate or opportunist. They will want another "name" and that combination at the moment points to another potentially disastrous appointment in the form of Sam Allardyce. Don't get me wrong, I like Big Sam but I think he has his place in football management and it isn't as the Manager of The Academy. I hope I am proved wrong but West Ham face yet another relegation, one that will test the patience and pockets of the current owners even further.

With Fulham also hovering above the relegation zone. the Championship could potentially be a mini-London league next season if QPR, Palace and Charlton can all get their acts together!


ChicagoAddick said...

Also my Hammers mates are convinced they will offload Parker in January.

I have a view that Gold & Sullivan won't mind relegation, which will enable them to strip the club top to bottom and then try to win promotion and become a yo-yo club. A strange ambition but something they did successfully at Brum.

Dave said...

CA - Gold & Sullivan will need to increase personal security if Parker is sold in January. They will do what they need to turn a profit but I think they might underestimate the West Ham public if they think they will wear mediocrity once again like the Brummies.