West Ham’s Grant: Being a manager is madness
Hammers boss Avram Grant believes that if they were starting their careers today, neither Alex Ferguson or Arsene Wenger would be given the same length of time to prove themselves.
WHEN YOU are a football manager, expecting the sack is simply part and parcel of the job, but these past couple of weeks have been extreme even by Premier League standards.
The controversial dismissals of both Chris Hughton at Newcastle United and Sam Allardyce at Blackburn have received widespread condemnation and with rumours of Grant’s imminent demise doing the rounds too, it is a business that the West Ham boss is certainly cynical about.
“I think being a football manager today is a mad job, we know it from the beginning, said Grant following Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Blackburn Rovers at Ewood Park.
“The job is exciting, but I don’t think it is a good job all the time as sometimes decisions are harder than in normal business.
“This is the job and we cannot change it. Since big money came and people came into football who were not from football, they think they can push a button.”
Fortunately for Grant, West Ham’s owners have refrained from pressing that button and ending their manager’s spluttering Upton Park career.
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Grant himself believes that patience is needed by everyone.
“We need to respect people like David Dein at Arsenal,” said the West Ham boss.
“Despite his first year they kept with Arsene Wenger and everything changed, the same with Alex Ferguson,
“I think if Alex and Arsene was in the era of today, I don’t know will what happen. If they were not given a chance we would have missed the best two managers in the world.”
Even Grant would not claim to be rubbing shoulders with that exalted company, but he shrugged at stories that say he must win one of the next three (now two) games to save his skin at West Ham.
“Nobody has said this to me,” insisted Grant. “I’m not worried about these things I only care when I speak with the owners.
“We speak only on how to make this team stronger in January. They are trying to do their best, we have a big debt, it’s not easy but we need to do the best for the team.”
Football, as they say though, is a funny old game, though perhaps Grant’s survival at Upton Park until the end of the season would be more surprising than if he keeps his job.
Either way, Grant does not seem to be too worried.
“What I think it doesn’t matter. I need to do my job and that’s what I concentrate on,” he said.
“I believe in the future of West Ham and if I did not I would not be here speaking with you.
“We need to do it step by step. It doesn’t change anything, we need to do our best on the pitch?”
The problem is they haven’t got the time to do it step by step and in this mad world of Premier League football, his time on the merry-go-round could be coming to an end.