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David Moyes’ career has been a downward spiral ever since he took up his job at Manchester United. Replacing a manager of Sir Alex Ferguson’s calibre is no easy task, and Moyes certainly felt the heat at Old Trafford. Shortly after, United appointed Louis van Gaal, while Moyes moved on to join Real Sociedad. Things did not work out in the La Liga either, following which he joined Sunderland.
Having resigned from Sunderland in June after being relegated from the Premier League, Moyes is on a run of failure. His 11 years of stability at Everton from 2002-2013 deserve all the recognition and praise but that does not clear the doubts that people have about his effectiveness at West Ham United. The club made the official announcement on Tuesday, and while it is certainly better than being without a manager, there are a lot of concerns about how Moyes will impact a club that is already struggling.
Sunderland and Aston Villa, both clubs of comparable size, are now struggling with life in the Championship, while they are also dealing with dwindling finances. That is what relegation brings, and it certainly does not seem like a good prospect for the Hammers. Moyes might have been the most readily available option but he could create more problems for them instead of solving them.
Moyes’ record at Sunderland was the most shocking. He managed to record just 8 wins in 45 matches, and the club eventually surrendered themselves in the relegation battle. Of course, West Ham are not in such a bad situation but they are not in a good place either.
The club fans like swagger and attacking play from their managers – qualities which Slaven Bilic brought in the 2015-16 season. Sacking him might have seemed a bit harsh but replacing him with Moyes – a manager who relies on deeply-defensive plays – might not be the best option.
The fear is that West Ham, still wrestling with the upheaval of life in their new stadium, won’t be refreshed by a manager who proved so morose in his previous tenure. When the Hammers were getting set to move to their new stadium, there was talk of Champions League football, with 20,000-plus of extra capacity pushing West Ham to next level. However, the appointment of Moyes seems like a sideways step for an ownership without the finances or vision to provide that type of growth.
The hope at the London Stadium will be that West Ham can measure up to Everton in terms of stature, given the money and the facilities. If so, Moyes will be producing similar improvements during his time on Merseyside and the gamble could be successful. If that doesn’t happen though, the future looks bleak for both Moyes and West Ham.
It will be an uphill task for Moyes to lead a club that is struggling, and he will have to do so while also rediscovering his former self from his time at Everton.