West Ham’s decision to place ex-Everton scout Tony Henry in charge of their summer recruitment policy has increased speculation that David Moyes will be their new manager, according to the Daily Telegraph.
The Hammers co-owners David Sullivan and David Gold have, significantly, opted to appoint Henry to lead their transfer plans instead of Sam Allardyce’s trusted scout Martin Glover. This is the biggest indication yet that Allardyce will not be landing a new deal and it would appear that Moyes is the prime candidate to take the reins.
Ex-Manchester United boss Moyes is said to be top of a list that West Ham have drawn up regarding potential managerial options, which also includes Slaven Bilic, Marcelo Bielsa, Michael Laudrup and intriguingly, Rafael Benitez.
Out of those candidates Benitez is the stand-out name and, as he is expected to leave Napoli at the end of the season, he could be a realistic option providing he is not snapped up by a bigger club.
The former Liverpool and interim Chelsea manager would be ideal for matching West Ham’s ambition and his experience at the top level would be a massive appeal to the owners. Moyes appears to be the front runner though, and he presents a safe option in terms of Premier League pedigree.
Despite his torrid time at Old Trafford the Scot’s record in England’s top flight is better than Allardyce’s. In 461 matches Moyes has a highly respectable win ratio of 41%, compared to Big Sam’s 34% from 428 games. That’s 143 points more for the former Everton boss.
Also, the fact Moyes took the Toffees into uncharted territory, miraculously getting them into the UEFA Champions League qualifiers after finishing fourth in the 2004/05 campaign on a shoe-string budget speaks volumes of his credentials.
The 51-year-old, who was only appointed Real Sociedad manager in November, reportedly earns £1.5 million-a-year, significantly less than the £3 million Allardyce is currently on at West Ham. So not only would Moyes provide a safe option in terms of retaining the club’s Premier League status and taking them up the table, he comes cheap and can work on a tight budget – all massive factors in West Ham’s pursuit.
It remains to be seen whether the influence of Henry can tempt Moyes back to England this summer, as the Scotsman has believed to have told his friends that he is happy in Spain.
For me though, it should be Benitez that West Ham’s owners are trying to lure to the club. In 254 matches managing in the Premier League the Spaniard has a win percentage of 56 and can boast Champions League and FA Cup successes with Liverpool, adding a Europa League trophy to that during his short spell at Chelsea.
While managing the east London outfit would be a different prospect entirely for the Napoli boss, his tactically inclined and very shrewd, so he is more than capable.
Moyes presents someone in the same mould as Allardyce, results driven and less worried about the style of football. Not much would change. But, with the club set for the big stadium move in 2016, an exciting and high profile manager like Benitez would be just what they need to take them to the next level.
Who do you think is the best managerial candidate to take over at West Ham this summer? Let us know in the comments section below!