Slav takes back seat and proves he’s a BIG man


LEROY (1)Slaven Bilic has shown himself to be a very big man by taking a back seat for tonight’s game.

He has decided to leave Terry Westley – who knows the players who take on Lusiantos well – to run the dug out  and it really does take a big man to do such a thing.

I’ll be honest, had I taken over I’d have wanted to be in charge and take any credit coming but that’s obviously not Slav’s way. He’s proving himself a top bloke from the start but it makes perfect sense to allow the man who knows each of the players so well to take charge.

It wasn’t without significance for me that Slav appointed Julian Dicks to his coaching staff. Everybody knows Dicksie will say what he thinks and doesn’t suck up to anyone. That Slav wants him alongside him shows he doesn’t surround himself with ‘yes men.’

Everything that’s happening feels really West Ham and it’s brilliant that so many kids are being given their chance. The manager will be in the stands getting a much better view of them  than he would from the dug out.

Those kids will have so much going for them tonight and I hope they don’t freeze. I don’t expect them to and I expect us to win well. There will be a lot of attention on Reece Oxford and we will all be hoping and praying the boy does the business.

He’s a massive prospect but tonight it will all be about his temperament. This is a wonderful start to a long campaign and I expect the old stadium to be rocking tonight.

There’s no better place to be on any night of the week – there’s no atmosphere like itat any other ground in the country and the excitement generated this summer is about to explode.


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Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!"

Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon


  • Iron Man says:

    Well said.Westley getting alot of forum abuse from some people.Clueless morons with nothing else to gripe about.This would have been a decision taken amongst many at the club.It isnt a case of Westley saying this is my toy im keeping it for the night.

  • bubs says:

    Agree 100% IronMan,if these so called fans start now before the season starts it shows how proud they are to be connected to our club,
    Give the man the chance to see if he can handle the big occasion,
    Also it won’t be his decision who plays from the youngsters and where,I think Oxford is being played out of position so if he makes a mistake it won’t be so costly and effect his Moral and if I am correct that’s a brilliant managerial decision

  • Iron Man says:

    It has been a slow news day bubs.People need something to gripe about.I would have thought playing back in europe would be a happy day for all hammers fans.Obviously not for some of them.They still have to find something trivial & pretty pointless to have a moan up about.Wouldnt be surprised if they had ‘Westley Out’ banners at the match,lol

  • Lt. Quickdrawovic 1st Slavalry C&H Regt says:

    Now it’s all about to start there’ll be a need for extra thick nappies. As for me I say bring it on this is the start of the good times.

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