Hammers legend wants Martin O’Neill as West Ham boss

Sir Geoff Hurst has said that the appointments of both Gianfranco Zola and Avram Grant were mistakes.

Hammers legend Sir Geoff Hurst believes that Martin O’Neill should be the new manager of West Ham, whether the team are relegated this season or not.

The World Cup Final hat-trick hero believes the Hammers are doomed in their survival battle and he insisted that the problems stem not just from this season, but from the last three or four.

“I did not expect the disaster that it has been this season, but in many respects it is not just this year,” Hurst told BBC Radio Five Live.

“I think the appointment of Gianfranco Zola was not a good one. I admire him as much as any player, but him coming in from the Italian under-21 team to manage a club in a difficult Premier League was not right.”


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Hurst has little time for current boss Avram Grant either.

“I am not sure the appointment of Avram Grant was particularly good,” he said. “He got the job possibly on the back of doing well at Chelsea, but as we know they were set up with a tremendous bunch of senior players. He just took over the reins and let the players get on with it.”

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Hurst, who played one short of 500 games in claret and blue, scoring 248 goals, knows exactly who he would select as the Hammers new manager.

“Martin O’Neill would be good for West Ham because he has proved that he can do the job anywhere,” said the footballing knight.

“I don’t know how much it would cost, but if I could wave a magic wand for the start of next season, I would have O’Neill in charge of the club.”

Even if his wish came true, Hurst is not expecting Scott Parker to be part of things.

“I wouldn’t have thought Parker would stay,” he said. “It is fantastic what he has achieved in West Ham’s very poor season.

“I believe in loyalty, but I think he has served his time and he deserves an opportunity to play Champions Lea-gue football and continue to play for England, which he has a better chance of doing at another club.”

West Ham still have three games to save their skins, but Hurst does not hold out much hope.

“There is a glimmer,” he said, “Until mathematically you are out of it, there is always a chance, but it looks very ominous to me.”

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