The main challenge that Croatian Slaven Bilic will face is the strength in depth for the upcoming season. With the Hammers qualifying for Europa League, and starting their campaign in three weeks, they will be needing a large squad being capable of performing on a regular basis domestically and in Europe.
That challenge falls down to Bilic, who will looking in the market for quality players at a cheap price. The Hammers have already announced they have signed Pedro Obiang, and will definitely be on the look out for more players within the near future.
One thing that Bilic needs to ensure is he hits the ground running, being a former Hammers player Bilic will have a connection with the supporters that Sam Allardyce just didn't have. Although if results do not go in their favour then the fans will soon turn against him. Big Sam said: “Slaven’s popular and it will start off okay but it won’t take much for the mood to change if results aren’t going well." according to the London Evening Standard.
The challenge of balancing the domestic competitions and Europe is not an easy feat by any imagination, clubs league form in the past that have entered the Europa League have been weak due to the strenuous challenge of two games within the space of three-four days.
The Croatian has experienced this at former club Besiktas and will be hoping that he can replicate the form in Europe which got Besiktas into the final 16 against all odds after beating Liverpool in the round of 32 and finishing top of Tottenham’s group.
The Hammers are a mid-table club who have ambitions to make it into Europe. Under Allardyce, West Ham have finished around mid-table averaging 12th in the Premier League since getting promoted in 2011-12.
In Bilic’s first season, will the board be expecting him to mount a serious push for Europe or finish in a respectable position and take the Europa seriously ready for their first season at the Olympic Stadium?
West Ham fans will be looking forward to a fresh start under former defender Bilic as they get prepared for life away from Upton Park starting in the 2016-17 season.
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