David Moyes to be given control of West Ham transfers as club prepare contract to keep manager

KEN DYER
David Moyes to be given control of West Ham transfers as club prepare contract to keep manager

West Ham are poised to offer David Moyes a new deal and, if he accepts, are prepared to abandon plans for a director of football.

The club have been impressed with the way Moyes and his coaching team have stabilised things since arriving in November on a contract until the end of the season.

Nothing will be decided until West Ham, who are 14th in the Premier League and seven points above the bottom three, are sure of survival but should that be achieved, it is expected Moyes will be offered a permanent deal.

One of Moyes’s stipulations is expected to be that he has more control over transfers as he would be reluctant to work under a director of football, an appointment the club were considering making this summer following criticism by supporters of their player recruitment in recent seasons.

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It is understood Moyes, who built up a highly successful recruitment process when he was Everton manager, has been dismayed by the lack of structure in West Ham’s scouting network and has already overseen the appointment of five scouts.

Co-chairman David Sullivan, who has always been heavily involved in player signings, both at his previous club Birmingham and at West Ham, has promised to take a step back following a difficult season. That is also because of criticism from fans that promises made on player recruitment and going to the “next level” when moving to the London Stadium have not been realised.

In an interview earlier this season, Sullivan admitted: “I haven’t done well enough. Nobody has done well enough. I work my socks off but sometimes it’s not good enough.”

In a match-day programme following the crowd trouble during the 3-0 home defeat by Burnley, Sullivan and co-chairman David Gold wrote: “When it comes to player recruitment it is not an exact science and some of our signings over the past couple of years have not paid off as we had hoped.”

Moyes, should he stay, is keen to have more control over transfer activity and it is understood that Sullivan is prepared to accept that condition.

Moyes said recently: “All managers want to make the decisions on which they will be judged.”

West Ham, though, still intend to appoint a new head of recruitment to replace Tony Henry, who was sacked in February after saying the club did not want to sign any more African players.

The Hammers had a reputation of developing young talent under former Academy head Tony Carr, with players such as Rio Ferdinand, Frank Lampard, Michael Carrick, Joe Cole and Glen Johnson all beginning their careers at the club. In recent years, the player production line has slowed considerably, although West Ham are hoping that teenage defender Declan Rice is the first of a new crop of talent.

Moyes admitted he had a “point to prove” when he succeeded Slaven Bilic in November and will have achieved his - and the club’s - ambition this season should he ensure their survival in the Premier League. The Scot’s reputation had been affected by his experiences at Manchester United and then Sunderland and he will have gone some way to restoring his standing in the game if he keeps West Ham up this season.

Fans’ unrest and a debilitating list of injuries threatened that goal but five points from a possible nine in their past three matches have helped West Ham pull clear of the bottom three.