Given their move to the London Stadium and expensive activity in the summer transfer window, many supporters had high hopes for West Ham this season.
However, the Hammers have enjoyed a nightmarish start to the season and find themselves lingering in the relegation zone. Slaven Bilic is suffering a textbook example of second season syndrome.
Moreover, the Croatian’s footballing problems have even impacted upon his family life. In fact, Bilic has admitted to thinking about West Ham more than his newborn daughter.
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Considering the fact West Ham’s first two Premier League games showed great promise, it appears that it was their shock Europa League exit that has prompted such a decline in form.
After all, a home defeat at the hands of minnows Astra Giurgiu was never going to do wonders for the side’s confidence. Even worse, the permutations of the loss have spilled over into the league.
Since the defeat, the Irons have lost three league games on the trot, conceding a hearty eleven goals in the process. Shipping four goals against Watford and West Brom respectively proved particularly demoralising.
While Bilic’s men did return to winning form in mid-week, considering the opponents were Accrington Stanley, negativity remains. Besides, they needed a Dimitri Payet free-kick in the 96th minute to salvage proceedings.
Such a tumultuous run of form has taken its toll on manager Bilic in particular who had no such struggles to deal with last campaign.
This has been to such an extent that it has impacted his family life, made all the more prominent by the birth of his daughter on Tuesday. Bilic though has conceded that his attention remains with football.
Speaking with The Telegraph, the 48-year-old stated: “Like any father I adore my kids. But I said to my assistants that I feel very strange as I got a baby girl a couple of days ago and I am thinking totally about football.
“That’s not good, that’s not good.
“Of course, I adore her and if I had to walk on my knees to Australia for her then I would walk. I’m not talking about that. But, they asked me: 'Did you give her a name?’ and I said 'Name? No, I didn’t. That I have yet to do’.”
Therefore, it appears Bilic’s distractions with football have been so much so, that he hasn’t gotten round to naming his own daughter. It perfectly illustrates the demand and stress upon a modern day manager.
Hopefully though, if West Ham defeat Southampton this weekend, he may have gained the respite necessary to attract attention to his loved ones.
Where do you think West Ham will finish in the Premier League this season? Have YOUR say in the comment box below