Transfer strategy off the table for West Ham until Premier League safety is assured


David Moyes has said his sole focus is on keeping West Ham in the Premier League this season and is looking no further ahead than July 26 and the final game of the campaign at home to Aston Villa.

The Hammers have been embroiled in a relegation battle for most of the season despite losing just one of their first seven games when Manuel Pellegrini was at the helm in east London. He then went on a run of two wins in 12 games which led to the axe for the Chilean and was replaced by Moyes.

The Scot has won just three of 13 since but has continually remarked about the future and how he saw West Ham shaping up in a post-Pellegrini era. He started that with the recruits of Jarrod Bowen from Hull City and Tomas Soucek from Slavia Prague.

Then the pandemic hit.

Moyes admitted that during lockdown especially he had been looking at potential transfer recruits and sorting out the structure of the club going forward but after losing two straight games of Project Restart, his thinking altered to simply surviving this season.

The general consensus is that if Moyes keeps the club up in 2019/20 then he will remain in the post for the start of the 2020/21 season, which is likely to get underway in September.

West Ham manager David Moyes

Moyes was asked on Friday if he’d been looking ahead to potential transfers or if he was all consumed by the current state of affairs.

He said: “I’d love to say I was looking forward completely [to next season’s transfers] but I’m not taking my eye off the ball and I’m only looking at the next game.

“I can’t think any further than how we can pick up the points and win the next two or three games and then maybe it will give me a chance to look.

“To be honest I’m not sure we even know when next season is starting, we don’t have confirmation of the date yet so from my point of view, the big thing is to focus on what we can at the moment and make sure we are a Premier League club.

“Build on the performance we had against Chelsea which was a really top performance by the players and if we are capable of beating Chelsea we are capable of having a go against most teams that is the way I look at it so we will hopefully try and do that.”

Fellow relegation manager Eddie Howe admitted earlier this week that the battle against the drop was “all consuming” as the Cherries struggle for the Premier League lives.

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Howe’s side have failed to win since the restart and were smashed 4-1 in their own back yard by West Ham’s opponents this weekend, Newcastle United, last time out.

Moyes agreed with Howe’s sentiment, saying: “I don’t disagree. But football consumes you.

“When you are a football manager you’re consumed all the time, quite often it goes a little bit… not exactly what the managers are doing – we all realise we are very fortunate to be in the position we are in – but a lot of the managers work very hard and have to listen to a lot, shift a lot out and use what we think’s right.

“It’s a difficult job and obviously being at the bottom of the league, which I’ve been before, it comes with a different pressure. But let me tell you when your teams at the top and you are expected to win every week it comes with big pressure as well.”





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