‘Put our hands in our pockets’ Music to my ears..
West Ham United have guaranteed that Avram Grant’s job is safe until at least Christmas and stressed that the manager should not be a scapegoat for the club’s poor form.
Karren Brady, the West Ham vice-chairman, also strongly hinted at changes to the playing squad in January and, despite the club’s debts, suggested that money would be available.
Asked if Grant would still be the West Ham manager at Christmas, Brady said: “Most definitely, yes. We haven’t even had the discussion about whether Avram is going to be here or not. That’s not for today or for Christmas.
“We just all have to hold our nerve. We have to believe in the people at the top – we put them there. Weak-minded people press the panic button, we are not weak-minded but at the same time we didn’t want to just survive this season.
“There are things we can do. It’s not just one person. That is what we are working on: how we can work together to change the fortunes of the club. Blaming other people is not always the right answer.”
Another consideration is surely the fact that Grant’s contract is worth around £5 million over the next four years, making him expensive to sack.
With just one win 13 matches, West Ham have been propping up the Premier League table almost continuously since the end of August.
Only Middlesbrough have been bottom at Christmas but still escaped relegation since the launch of the Premier League.
“We will do everything in our power to support Avram,” said Brady. “We have been able to look at where there are weaknesses in the team and January is our opportunity to go and put things right. We did quite a bit of business in the summer, but obviously not enough. We have to look very hard at where the issues are and put our hands in our pockets.”