I Don’t Want an Italian Manager

I’ve thought about this a lot, and I don’t want my words to be misinterpreted in any way, but I am horrified that five people on the shortlist of six are said to be Italians. I have nothing against Italians, but would say the same whatever their nationality. I don’t want West Ham to be turned into another Liverpool or Arsenal where British born players are a novelty item and the team consists almost entirely of foreigners. I am not being at all xenophobic, but I just want the owners of the club to recognise that West Ham has traditionally recruited from within its own and attracted players from the local area. Maybe now is the time to recruit someone from outside that gene pool, but are we really saying that the only good managers are Italian managers?

If reports are to be believed, Zola and Di Canio are two of the leading contenders. I’d love to see Paolo Di Canio back here, although possibly as a number two. We cannot take chances over this appointment and need someone with some managerial experience, which both Zola and Di Canio lack. At least Roberto Mancini has buckets of it. But if he came I would bet you anything you like that within two years a British player would be a rarity in a West Ham first eleven.

I know who I would like to see offered the job and I will be telling you later!


105 Responses to I Don’t Want an Italian Manager

  1. Rob says:

    Well Iain,

    Word around Upton Park is that Mancini is the fav. For me what happenede to Curbs was discraseful and I do not blame him for leaving at all.

    So watch out because there will be an Itailan manger next week – Who?? Mancini!!

  2. Pat says:

    Why not give it to Curbishley

  3. Sid Hammer says:

    I feel exactly the same for exactly the same reasons. I don’t want us to lose our identity as a club. I happen to think there are some good British Managers who could do very well for us. I initially thought Mark Hughes might be on his way from City and I would like him at Upton park. That won’t happen now though!

  4. Scalyback says:

    I totally agree; Paolo as No 2 to a British or preferably English manager would be great, but who? The passion of Pearce would be good, but he has already said no. We need someone with a proven track record, who knows and understands the West Ham way; we certainly don’t want the likes of Alladyce or others of that school.

    Someone like Coppell might fit, but what about Alan Pardew?

    Just an afterthought but what about bringing Alan Devonshire back in a junior capacity with an eye to the future? He has done well in the lower leagues and might just surprise us.

  5. Adam Hammer says:

    Sorry, but i think this is the fist time I have disagreed with you.

    Mancini would be an amazing manager for WHUFC. If he comes we will be very lucky. With and Paolo as No.2, we would have a fantastic managerial team.

    I don’t agree that the club would change, we have traditions, and any new manager would have to respect that, and I am sure they would.

    The owners have said that our focus is on the Acadamy, and that will not change. But for a long time, we would have a manager with bags and bags of experience, and someone that will demand respect from the team.

  6. Jamie says:

    Tradition is the main word there Iain, a trait which is slowly being sucked out of the game. I have watched the Irons for many a year now and it never ceases to amaze me the lack of respect that our boardroom has consistently shown to the fans, let alone the managers. Fans make a club and the West Ham fans have made what is a tradition, historical and proud club.

    Leave the managers job aside for a second and the board should take a long hard look at the ticket purchasing, loyal fan and firstly apologise to us and then get us the man (be that an Italian) that we deserve…

  7. Completely with you on this sentiment Iain. The academy is the jewel in our crown. To be fair, historically, it has endured periods where players have not been brought through to the first team, or even the squad, but the successes of the last 45 years or so are innumerable. We’re not alone in this. One of the country’s other successful academies are now under threat, in actual fact probably more of a threat, of being stifled.

    Personally I don’t thing it’s going to happen. The current owners are a right bunch of bankers and are, by nature, penny pinchers. If they can save themselves transfer fees by bringing through academy players then I reckon that’s what they’ll do. They saw Terrence Brown do very well, thank you very much, out of the academy and if these players don’t get first team chances then they’ll find a manager who will. We’ve witnessed how adept at ousting managers they are.

  8. Times have changed... says:

    I would love to see a British manager in charge but who would take it after the way Curbs was treated. And more to the point who is avaliable?? I dont want Big Sam, Stuart Pearce or Harry won’t take it and look what O’Leary did with Leeds!! I even heard Martin Allen’s name, whats he ever done!!

    We have foreign owners, a foreign technical director (Italian I might add) so the only logical replacement is a foreign coach.

    Mancini has managed and won trophies at top clubs and during his time at Inter worked with a technical director so knows the score. I have heard that he is friends with Nani so there should be no problem there and if we want to attract some decent talent in the next transfer market an Italian or a top european manager is the way forward in my opinion. Zola or Di Canio should be considered as Assistants or coaches but not the manager.

    This will be West Hams first foreign coach ever and maybe we should just give him a chance and see what happens. The English ones we have had never seem to have done anything!! Lets just get behind whoever it is and give him some time to prove himself.

  9. Cc.whu says:

    I disagree, i think that for far too long we have lived in this bubble of keeping things within our own and being a family club, but where has it got us…..one saga to the next…with the way the game is changing i think its time West ham try to keep up and if a manager with the calibre of Mancini comes in, it will be the best thing that has happened to West ham in a long time! And with names like Billy Davies, allardyce, etc from the british contingent (are you kidding me) give me Di Canio & Zola or Bilic any day …..the fans would be right behind them from the start and be the 12th man we once were and havent been for a while !!!….

  10. Happy Hammer says:

    An Italian manager……..why not !
    This could be the time for West Ham to make the change and get in a quality manager who will attract some real decent players. That is not to say to ignore home grown talent, far from it, but to have a decent mix of both.
    I do agree though that it should be someone with experience i.e. Mancini.
    Ok so it appears that Curbs had little choice to leave under the cicumstances that we are believed to have occured but let’s embrace this opportunity to better our team by bringing in a top quality European manager, it is the way forward for West Ham if we really want to challenge for European football within the next few seasons.

  11. Perth Hammer says:

    Glenn Hoddle please.

  12. Dano says:

    i have to agree with adam hammer. mancini would be an incredible coup for the club. we have had britsh managers for last however many years and havent really won or done anything with them.
    I agree we need to keep the tradition of the club, bringing through the youngsters but when also need a proven manager and there is anymore proven then mancini who has won the seria a title three times with inter.

  13. Swiss Hammer says:

    The issue is that Football is now global. I dont think that we can stop the rot. Just look what will happen to MAN C. the new owner is obsessed with creating a new Galacticos. What would happen to the 2nd best youth system in the UK? (west ham being the best of course)
    The positives from having an Italian manager is that the defense would be strong, some flair up front, but most importantly, the Italians are used to having a manager and a director of football. It looks as though Nani is staying so having someone that can work with him can only be good for the club, if he is Italian, then so be it.
    For my mind Nani seems very keen on building a strong youth set up so it may not all be bad.
    On a final note, something strange is going on at my beloved club. It may just be newspapers twisting quotes to sell bum rags, but why are so many people quoted at being at odds with the boeard, Curbs, ferdinand, Linda, Freddi Ljunburg, the list goes on.

  14. Bill Richards, Durbs by the sea, South Africa says:

    I was born and bred in West Ham and 60 + years down the track still support the Hammers albeit from afar. What has our Club done to deserve a board that does not understand the need to be committed to the historical legacy it has inherited? If I was a season ticket holder I would be very angry indeed. It is not called the beautiful game for nothing and the Hammers up until recently were renowned for playing attractive, exciting football. There was also loyalty – players to the Club and Board to the managers. It seems like we will be forced to suffer an influx of foreigners to the detriment of home grown Academy talent. Imported soccer mercenaries only in the game for what they can get out of it. Perhaps someone could persuade Richard Branson to take over the reins? His entry in Wikipedia shows he has some interest in soccer.

  15. Dano says:

    glenn hoddle is useless and ex tottenham, no way!

  16. aussihammer says:

    I cant see anyone with experience taking on this job unless they are desperate, obviously no money and a Borad that does what it feels like without telling teh manager. How about Mad Dog and Di Canio pairing for a stormy start. Beyond that we are limited but the ex chelsea guy from last season (sorry cant remember his name)is still avaialble, has experience and knowledge of Premiership and to be fair was pretty succesful last year.

  17. Richard says:

    I disagree too, and whilst Bilic would be my first choice I would definitely take Mancini and can see the sense in Zola too. I’m actually getting excited by the shortlist – for a while yesterday I was starting to panic tbh

    If there was an English manager of note then fine, but there isnt

  18. Roy says:

    I think that we have to accept, even if we don’t agree with it, that our football – especially the Premier League, has changed for ever. The influx of so many foreign players, managers and owners has stripped clubs of their original identity and they are all becoming – particularly the ones who challenge for trophies – just a club who happen to use the name of where the stadium is. Take Gerrard and Carragher out of Liverpool and yuu are just left with an international group of people who happen to be based in Liverpool. Ditto Arsenal and Chelsea and soon to include Manchester City. Some clubs, and this includes West Ham, still have some of their original identity left but this will continue to be eroded. As a result of all of this, when a club is looking for players or managers they look at the worldwide game as the only objective is to try to get the best they can regardless of nationality. It would appear that the best possible available managers are mainly foreign and that makes it a given that this is the route the club will take. Whether any of them will accept the role is another matter of course. Conditions imposed by the board, salary and transfer budget could wipe the whole short list out of contention at a single stroke.

  19. Prince H says:

    Bilic is foreign but would suit perfect!
    And if the choice stood between Sam A and Mancini you would be stupid to choose the Bolton man. I could take Devonshire or Alvin, and see the point in that. But for Gods sake, ypu can have a foreign manager and still have some pride left. It’s not were you are from, it’s what your heart gives you. And I’m certain an Italian can see that we have a great Academy and work with those people. See our fan base. Bilic or Mancini would be fantastic for a young british player to have somewhere around them.

    Another thing is all those billionaries buying the clubs right now, like they have found a new playground. THAT and not foreign managers per see could ruin the football.

  20. bubbleblower says:

    I hate what has happened to Curbs it was a terrible thing to do but……I do not think we should stick to a formula that has clearly not worked. I think now is a time for change we always stick to English/British managers and with that we have had limited success. Nearly all the prem clubs have foreign managers and are successful with it the clubs that don’t are always at the bottom of the division come the end of the season. We need too move on and bring in someone with a different pedigree if we don’t then we will only be a 10th finish club forever and that is not good enough for me I want a few trophies and joy at my beloved West Ham before I die. BRING IN THE ITALIANS!!! if it means success sorry but it’s true.

  21. Imp says:

    I personally have absolutely no problem with having an Italian manager at West Ham, not least Mancini.

    I say this because, from Serie C2 to Serie A, there is an overwhelming emphasis on promoting home grown talent. You only have to look at the success of the Italian Under-21 team to see this. There is a real feeling of moral obligation to nurturing the rising youth of Italian football, at all levels, and this contributes massively to the success of the National Team and Serie A sides.

    Mancini, along with most other Italian managers, have this philosophy pumped into them by the Italian system, and I have no doubt that he will insist on continuing the recruitment of homegrown talent if he takes over at West Ham. The youth system at Inter came on nicely when he was there, bringing up the likes of Mario Balotelli, a ridiculously talented homegrown youngster who is about to take over the world! Imagine what Mancini could do with our current crop of little’uns! And what about Sears and Balotelli upfront?! Oh My God.

    So have faith folks!


  22. Tuckshop says:

    The chairman has very clearly stated his desire maintain the WHU traditions and to keep this as a British club, so hopefully they will do that. I have no idea where this supposed ‘shortlist’ comes from, it has no standing as far as I can see?

    The Di Canio rumour makes me laugh. A banker is going to trust his investment to a neo-nazi headcase with no eexperience ? (or even qualifications?) Right.

  23. Winchester Hammer says:

    I can’t believe Pardew is even being mentioned in the same breath as the West Ham manager’s job. He was a disaster! He lost the dressing room; he was at a complete loss to know what to do when the team went into freefall; he was tactically inept; and he has managed to turn Charlton into a mediocre Championship side, rather than one that is expected to bounce back into the Premiership. I was delighted when he was sacked.

    I disagree with you Iain. A top Italian may not work, but I think it’s worth a try. We can’t go on living in the past of “Bulldog Britain” and balk at moving with the times. It’s naive and we will just get left behind. We have put our faith in English managers and, for a few short months, a Scottish manager, for decades and where are we? Not where we all think we should be.

    Time for a change!

  24. Baggs says:

    Bilic as manager, give him an offer he can’t refuse, as long as he has support and the right team aroung him he could do both jobs until 2010.

    Di Canio,

    in any role we can give him! get him in! Even if Bilic wants his own no.2 Di Canio would be invaluable in pretty much any role even if it is just making appearances or walking the touch line when things are going badly, that will certainly divert the attention of the WH boo boys that swear at every single misplaced pass!

  25. Phil says:

    Right, out with it, who do you want then?

    My only fear is that we may end up being very good defensively ( Not a bad thing for a change!) with an Italian coach ( I say coach because it is obvious it is the board who will be managing the football and club from now on) but will we then be happy winning 1-0 or drawing 1-1 every week!!!

    I would hope we at least get a good British no 2.

  26. Perth Hammer says:

    Hoddle is English, has lots of European experience, is tactically acute and has the T shirt. Ignoring him because he was at Tottenham is narrow-minded. Nor are his so-called religious beliefs relevant. Apart from terry Venables (no mention of him yet, then?), he’s the best football thinker the England team has had since Sir Alf (Sir Bobby and the present incumbent included).

  27. Ian Smith says:

    Just look at Mancinis portfolio underneath. I believe he will take West Ham to a new level. I also believe he will develop our academy to a level that will see a lot of young british talent not only filtering through into our squad but more importantly into the England squad.


    Mancini was one of the most talented players of his age, With Sampdoria, he formed a dynamic strike partnership with Gianluca Vialli, and led the club to its only scudetto in 1991, four Coppa Italias (1985, 1988, 1989 and 1994) and a Cup Winners’ Cup in 1990. He also lost the final of the 1991–1992 European Cup against Barcelona. With Lazio he won his second scudetto (2000) and Cup Winners’ Cup titles (1999) as well as two more Coppa Italias (1998 and 2000).

    After retiring as a player, Mancini coached Fiorentina (2001) and Lazio (2002–04) before moving to Inter in 2004. He won the Coppa Italia with both Fiorentina (2001) and Lazio (2004). During his tenure with Fiorentina, Mancini was occasionally willing to come out and play for the team due to the club having financial problems with its players. With Inter, he won two Coppa Italia (2005 and 2006), two Supercoppa Italiana (2005 and 2006) and three Scudetti (2005–06, 2006–07 and 2007-08), becoming the most successful Inter coach of the last 30 years.

  28. DaDon says:

    Fact: 38% of players in the Premier League are English. Fact: 70% of players in Serie A are Italian. So this idea that an Italian manager = foreign player dominance is nonsense. One of the reasons there are so many foreigners in the PL already is because there is a shortage of good young English players coming through – Sir Trev has been sounding the alarm bells for some time, We are lucky in that we do have a good youth policy and a steady supply of players who make it either here or at another club (eg Ray Houghton, Jimmy Bullard etc) so no manager, regardless of nationality, is going to throw that away.

    The big question is – which available English manager is good enough? I can’t see any, and I’d rather have an Italian than, say, Martin Jol. The other point is that Italian club sides have had foreign coaches for decades and have any of those clubs become less Italian? Of course not.

    Sorry Iain, but this is one big red herring. Let’s make sure we get the best available manager irrespective of nationality.

  29. Matt says:

    Di Canio as a match day mascot?

  30. HAMMEREDCALV says:

    The damage has already been done to our traditional british game, those are have gone, if the club wants to move forward and compete for trophies we need the best we can get. Iain i ask you this, who has been more successful in football ? Italians or the English ? i think we all know the answer to that question weather we like it or not ! Just maybe the Italians passion,technical ability, will to win and proven success in the game would rub of on the young exciting british players we have in our accademy. The club would be mad not to find Di Canio a roll as that would win the fans over in a instant and unite the club again.

  31. JMan says:

    Tough Iain, what you and we want doesn’t matter at all. It will be an Italian as that will fit in with the new system of coach rather than manager, with Nani, another Italian, controlling incomings and outgoings. On that basis Mancini with Di Canio would be great but Mancini is in the middle of a court case with Inter, so maybe Zola with Di Canio. Whatever I want Di Canio involved, just love the guy and will get the guys fired up or beat them up!!

  32. Jules says:

    Bring back Pardew, we have our traditions to think of. Roll on the championship we might win the league at that level.

  33. supernumbersix says:

    I know we’re not sure about how much we should trust the board at the moment, but they have stated on more than one occasion that they are committed to the Academy and the development of our young players. If they go back on that then I’m off to watch the local park kickabout every Saturday. Having supported WHU for 40 years man and boy and always been proud of our ability to recruit ‘from within’ (we also have a WHU academy for managers it seems) I now feel, as I did when Pardew went, that we have to bring in someone from outside. My fave for the job is Mancini . With full (!?) backing from the board it could be a really exciting time ahead.His lack of prem experience worries me a bit which is why PDC next to him would be good, if not a bit incendiary. If we go ‘English / British’ then who?? I don’t fancy any of the potentials personally. My outside choice and I know I’ll get shouted down is (whisper it) Jurgen Klinsman. So why so secretive Mr Dale??

  34. kevin mousley says:

    Good grief .. look where appointing our own has got us – not very far in terms of trophies and a secure berth in the top flight , I would suggest. The fabled ‘west ham way’ has been an occasional visitor to Upton park and much more apparent in our imagination than on the pitch. As to recruiting our own, we have had two golden ages of local lads; in the sixties and late nineties to the present.. for many years in between west ham, like all the other clubs took from wherever. I think we are all far too jittery. Understandable of course given the recent strife. Any hoo as far as I can tell the board are being pretty sensible and consistent. From what i have read, I beleive them over both Curbishley and McCartney. It hardly needs saying that football has changed and we need a board that’s responsive. One that doesn’t cave in to rich kid footballers with an inflated view of their own worth. As for ‘I don’t want Italians running my club’, we were happy for them to play for it .. can’t see the difference .. a manager is part of the same overall process. If are kids are good enough, they’ll get in the team, not least because it makes little financial sense for the board to invest in their development and then discard them.

  35. spidermonkey says:

    Di Canio hates foreigners so i suppose that fits your little Englander
    standpoint. Though i think it’s his willingness to spout his vile views on subjects like this which will be a major stumbling block in his coaching ambitions at any club, sponsors and sane fans don’t like that sort of thing.
    Funny line in The Independent … ”No approaches have been made to the likes of Harry Redknapp, Stuart Pearce, and indeed board members have been bemused that both men have ruled themselves out when they were never under consideration”…
    lol gatecrashers, don’t you hate ’em?
    Also in the same piece …”Some applicants such as Sam Allardyce and Paolo di Canio have been ruled out already however – Allardyce due to his favoured playing style and di Canio due to his lack of coaching experience”…

    So now will the idiots who know nothing at all about football please stop calling for the fascist little scumbag.

  36. spidermonkey says:

    This is what the man himself will bring to Upton Park. There was a time when the East End stood firm against his type.

  37. LaurieInSpain says:

    Its not about xenophobia… though that is so quickly levelled at our club. Nor is it just about the fans desire to see a healthy representation from our own youth team. For me it is everything to do with our preferred style of football. Back in the days when Channel 4 used to show Serie A games live I would watch the first half… as the whistle went you could flick over to ITV and catch a Championship game just kicking off, I almost never turned back to C4 to watch the second half from Italy. Although it featured some of the biggest names on the world stage the football was utterly devoid of passion… at least in the way we recognise it. Guff.
    Of the managers offered Mancini would have to be the pick, maybe with Di Canio as No.2 so at least there is someone who can explain to him how we like things done. But if we are going down that road then maybe we should dust off George Graham. NOT.
    If we have learnt anything from the debacle of Curbs and keegan it must be that the next manager has an understanding of how modern club hierarchies work. Though I pity Keegan having to kow tow in any way to Dennis Wise, surely the most ridiculously named man in the history of football.

  38. spidermonkey says:

    Di Canio, so much passion,…
    How i miss having a player that handpicked the games that he would play in, usually only home games by the way.
    Where does this worship of a complete idiot come from?
    He’s not fit to tie the laces of Brooking, Moore, Hurst, Devonshire etc.

  39. Howard Ruse says:

    I have been a Hammers supporter through and through for 50 years. I first went to Upton Park 40 years ago. I had season tickets in the old West Stand for 8 years. I still go if and when I can, and can get hold of tickets. I look back nostalgically on the days of the likes of Moore, Hurst, Peters, Brooking, Redknapp (Harry,Harry Redknapp, Harry Redknapp on the Wing), all with Claret & Blue in their veins, and the likes of Bonds and Devonshire who became synonymous with the Club. I attended the FA Cup Final beating of Arsenal, and the team event at the Hilton, afterwards. Fantastic days to look back on. But we now need to look forward, not back. Do we really want to continue going through each season counting how many points are needed to stay up (approx 32 this season), rather than how many to get a place in Europe? Or to continue having little chance of winning a domestic cup? So if we now need to join the likes of Chelsea, Liverpool, Arsenal etc to beat them regularly in the league, then lets have a foreign manager if that’s what it takes. All this talk of Bilic and DiCanio; they’re not exactly English and didn’t come through the Academy. And why would the club abandon the Acadamy and fail to give local players the opportunity if they are good enough? It wouldn’t make business sense to cut off such a source of good talent (and potential income!). So, guys, take your blinkers off and look at the potential, regardless of nationality. We all love the West Ham style of football, but it hasn’t actually won much for us. Perhaps there is a compomise there, to become a successful side rather than a perennial also-ran.

  40. Paul says:

    I agree LaurieInSpain. If you think curbs was negative look at italian football on a Sunday. Its a shame because in the last few games WHUFC started to score a few goals and looked more entaining. Curbs seem to be opening up a bit at home at least.

    I can’t see Mancini coming when the board have stated”The parameters go along with what we are trying to achieve at the club. The key element is that we want this to be a SUSTAINABLE club”. In my language that means balancing the books. No big signings, loan deals and if a good offer comes in for a player. Bite their hand off.

    Any one know any sheiks in Dubai or Saudia Arabia.

  41. HAMMEREDCALV says:


  42. HAMMEREDCALV says:


  43. Tuckshop says:

    HammeredCalv…….well, that was a well-reasoned argument.

  44. yea well says:

    Paolo was a great player for us and for most fans they still hold him dear i dont go along with alot of the things he has done or said but his private life is down to him as long as the club dont become a speaker to voice his views cant say he will do a great job and we will win this and that but dont think he should just be dismissed and pushed away either i would have him as the right hand to a man with a little more exp in the role and i agree Mancini has more exp in that role and working along side a sporting director(nani) than any other name that has been thrown up so far. harry coming back would be even better aslong as he got he was allowed to do his job and the bunch of bankers stayed out of it but i very much doubt it would ever happen.the whole club needs to be given a kick in the butt from the top down to the backroom staff and players

  45. Van Der Elst says:

    I’m with LaurieInSpain – it’s about the football. How have Mancini’s teams played?

  46. Tuckshop says:

    Di Canio’s actual beliefs are neither here not there. The public perception of him is as a fascist and I can’t see the board courting the PR disaster that that could turn out to be.

    I have memories of Paulo to warm my soul on dark winter nights, but I don’t want him to manage WHU and IMHO it is just not going to happen.

  47. I don’t get the academy vs. foreigner discussion. We were all excited about the prospect of having Nani’s help to fill the academy with stars in the making “foreigners”.
    Same problem – different timescale, or problem solved?

  48. Tuckshop says:

    Further to my earlier comment regarding the standing of the six-name shortlist, I have read a quote from the board elsewhere that they intend to get to a “a 5 to 7 name list by early next week”. So it must be longer than that at the moment?

  49. Roshi says:

    The problem of having an Italian coach is that we would always be going backwards and very rarely attacking..boom..boom.

  50. iron lung says:

    West Ham + attractive football + upper mid table security = Zola + Steve Clarke. Di Canio and Bilic for the future

  51. yea well says:

    its all the same really gooners prob the biggest offenders of imported talent squad aint players he bought recent really 70% of them was with the club when merson was still there so yea i dont really matter its just time scale (joppe)

  52. HAMMEREDCALV says:

    we all have personal beliefs, but we are talking football, Di canio as Mancini no2 would work for us, im sure with the flak the press are giving us already makes the job unappealing to most managers out there, but who cares about the fleet street mob, they will slate us all season, the press contributed to the way Curbs was feeling,they print crap in the papers and unfortunatley some fans wish to believe it and got on Curbs case ! so called hammer fans……..think not !!!

  53. yea well says:

    cast ya mind back to the game when pards was here and wenger took a swing at him just think how diffrent it would be if it was bilic or paolo and not pardew amusing thought

  54. jon.london colney says:

    ok with the risk of p1sin some people off here TRADITIONALY what have we done in the last 20 years? if we want to change and move wuth the times then the best man for the job is the right man and if he comes with a pink ribbon in his hair then so be it !!!
    west ham have traditionaly been winners of nothing,champions of bugger all and cup winners of toto crap.and before you get on your high horse i do know we have won the cup and div 2 !

    Mancini and di canio/zola no2. if there italian so ! if they can change our club in to a force to be rekoned with and win things and qualify for cl then they are the right men.

    bring it on,the academy will allways be there,the history will never change,but the future is now and time to embrace what every other succesfull club has been doing.

    coyi or coyitalians !!!!

  55. Choa ! says:

    italians all the way ! they are the most successful football brains out there ! as for Di Canio being a facist (lol) i think most italians are ! who cares there intitled there beleifs as we british are !! the only will be up !!!

  56. Dominic says:

    I’m a hammer living in malta neighbouring italy. i know italian football like the backo f my hand. if we appoint an italian coach it will be ok – hoping he won’t be too defensive!
    abd as long as we will still field 7-8 brits in the side.
    I can assure you that donadoni is a much better manager thab mancini. mancini was successful in squads with 40 world class players and when juventus & milan were penalised so he is no maestro. Donadoni has worked with limited squads in italy that have played good football.
    there aren’t any good brits around – the only ones i see are keano and hughes. both will not come.
    we need someone with experience. i do adore paolo di canio but he has no experience at this level.
    hope we make the right decision!

  57. jon.london colney says:

    donadoni just been seen getting of a plane a london airport !!!!!!

  58. Woking Hammer says:

    Quite simply the oppurtunity to have a recognised first class manger can not be turned down. The question is what is it about the club that would make him interested which according to reports he is.
    I agree we should keepthe traditions of the club as a developer of top quality even world class players and I think the way to do that is to bring the right people to support Mancini. To that end I would bring in Di Canio (look how Joe Cole turned out with him as mentor) and Brooking. Both know and understand the traditions and workings of the club and the importance of the fans to the success of the team.

    With the young talent we have and have acquired this combination could work together to bring through a team of real flair and quality but with discipline and a steely edge in the next 3 to 4 years.

  59. Eric says:

    The possibility of things changing are exciting. Like other posters said i think that the board and incoming managers are aware of the clubs tradition and will respect that. I think the players would be eager as well to see a change. We’ve paid our dues long enough. Change has to come. West Ham Supporters will always be the greatest.


  60. Roy says:

    SkyBet have suspended the betting on Donadoni – don’t know why but this usually means it’s a done deal or some shady dealing.

  61. Woking Hammer says:

    Just had a call from a mate who has contact with a source connected to the club who he trusts explicitly. Di Canio is coming & will be unveiled Wednesday, in what capacity is not known I doubt it would be as manager more like as someones right hand man. If true then we should have an anouncement prior to that as to who the manager is.

    I am begining to look forward to going to West Brom.

  62. Martin of Surbiton says:

    Another signing on the official site – Uruguayan Walter Lopez given the No. 5 shirt. Interesting.

    Given the lack of UK management talent, I’d go for an experienced Italian like a shot – should get on wth Nani at least.

  63. Matt says:

    Where have you seen the Walter Lopez thing? On Wikipedia… http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walter_Alberto_L%C3%B3pez… Dodgy Kia related deal?

  64. Tony Titan says:

    Ian – Could not agree more with you – bang on !

  65. Get some steel back into the Team……. Billy Bonds for me!

  66. Martin of Surbiton says:

    It’s on wfufc DOT com

  67. Matt says:

    Got it, ta. 22 yrs old – looks good, only a year contract though, still smells of Kia….

  68. chris says:

    Zola would attract players may be him and mancini would be good.Im sorry Iain but the days of local talents gone,especially here in east ham,most of the locals are not intrested.

  69. Eric says:

    Next match is going to be great. Embrace it boys! Had to happen.

  70. Martin of Surbiton says:

    If this is the feller, he can certainly hit the ball hard:


  71. E1 says:

    Director Of Football : Sir Trevor Brooking.
    Head Coach : Harry Redknapp, Billy Bonds Or Kevin Keegan.
    Assitant Coach : Martin Allen, Or Paulo Di Canio.(to be groomed and to follow on as the next head coach and so on .
    ALL by one ex Hammers but all men with hi morals expertise and experience.
    What a team!, How happy would we all be and how entertained would we be ,win lose or draw I am sure it would be worth watching and worth the money.

  72. Matt says:

    Iain, I am with the masses here. I fear the out of work British managers are not tactically astute enough to lock horns with the games ‘modern’ managers. We will get much more out of the technically better players, like Di Michele with a technically superior manager.

    Also we can attract better talent with a better manager; Martin Allen for instance is not going to be the carrot to dangle to the ‘new’ messi for instance, where as Donaldoni might be…

    Embrace the Italians, I for one am looking forward to a half time pizza 🙂

  73. There’s been a betting frenzy on Donnadoni this afternoon. Bet 365 rep has said “It’s as if he’s been spotted at Upton Park.” Their odds have gone from 20-1 to 4-6 as masses of cash has been put down at all odds between (10-1, 8-1, 4-1 & 4-6).

    Does somenone know something we don’t?

  74. Update on last message – Roberto Donnadoni flew in to the City Airport earlier this afternoon to attend an interview with the West Ham board.

    It’s rumoured that John Collins of Hibs was interviewed this morning.

  75. Antifa says:

    How are most Italians fascist you fool? If that’s the case how come Di Canio gets slated by half of Italy everytime he opens his mouth or throws out one of his nazi salutes? Any chairman that employed such a moron would quite rightly get all sorts of flak. And as for imagining what he would have done if it was him on the touchline instead of Pardew when Wenger got upset just shows that you don’t care about your clubs so called good name.

  76. Ok. So next time I’ll read all the messages before I post “Hot Off The Press” news. DOH!

  77. Mike Hammer says:

    as much as i liked PdC as a player – i don’t think we should have a manager whose picture doin the hitler salute has gone round the world…

  78. Scalyback says:

    Changing the subject for a moment, WHUFC have just announced a new signing, Walter Lopez. He’s a left back, 22 who has just left River Plate in Uruguay, so can be signed outside the window.

  79. Nick says:


    You make good points. Howvwer the one part of our tradition I would like to change is that we never win anything.

  80. hammermolder says:

    Completely disagree Iain,all the avaliable english managers are relic’s of an old system,we need to move on and catch up with the modern game!!,p.s been looking at Lopez on internet looks handy.

  81. barry the hammer says:


  82. I agree with you there hammermolder but it rises 2 questions. WHY are English managers are old fashoned and if there is a modern generation on its way.

  83. Doc H Ball says:

    Iain, I know who you want. Same as me and thousands of others. Sir Trevor.

    Of course, he won’t take it, especially in the present circumstances but he’s the only blue chip choice.

    Sir Trevor with Paolo as number 2!

  84. SwedeHammers says:

    I have been reading your column for some time now and just want to ask, Am I the only one who is excited about all this? Getting fresh (hopefully) inspiration with a new coach and some great signings in Walter Lopez and David Di Michel in the back line. And I agree Ian, we have tradition to look back at, but we also have to say. We don’t have bloody much to show for. In my lifetime I have experienced three FA cup wins. I would love to see our team fighting with the top five and get out in Europe, with or without an English coach. I just want a coach that is great for the team!!

  85. TFC hammer says:

    We need the best man for the job and if he’s Italian so be it. Football has changed and WH needs to keep up or get left behind. Hiring a foreign manager doesn’t mean the end of home grown players. We still have the best youth setup in the country.

  86. StainesWestHam says:

    I disagree Iain, why not give the job to the best candidate regardless of where he’s from! West Ham will always have the best youth academy products in the country and players will always break in to the first team. Let’s be honest though, we have never been able to attract top European players either and I think we need a manager with more knowledge in this area.

  87. E1 says:

    Come on Iain tell us who, or are you just using what we are saying to help you make a choice Come on put us out of our misery.

  88. Upton Spark says:

    I understand where Ian is coming from on this,but we havn’t exactly set the world alight in recent years with English managers have we?
    I say,let’s get the best man for the job and if he be an Italian then so be it!
    I would definatelt be in favour of Paolo as number 2 with a more experienced man in charge. Paolo would certainly get the crowd going which we have lacked since the loss of Tevez.
    I think the good times are just round the corner and it’s an exciting time waiting to see the outcome.

  89. MOORO says:

    It’s aglobal game now Iain, so with the clear lack of British managerial talent, It makes sense to go abroad.
    Like some on here I have a traditional view of our beloved Hammers, Sir Trev would be an excellent choice in the same vein as Ron & John. We all have to face up to the fact that the world of football has changed dramatically in the past 5/6 years alone.

    I’d be happy with Mancini or Donadoni with zola or Di Canio as number 2.

  90. brooking still the best says:

    I can understand your sentiment Ian, but having an Italian or Croation or any other manager would not mean an end to us having English players, or those who have come up from the youth system. Providing they are good enough. What would be the point of filling the team up with youth players and getting relegated. For me, I just want to see the team win! Tradition is all well and good but where does it get you if your not wining football games. We have a good youth policy and as far as i can tell, they dont want to disband it and in fact, they want to make it better then ever.

    I am quite excited about some of the names that are being linked. It all sounds very positive at the moment, maybe by the end of the season we might even be saying
    “Curbishley who”

    I was a strong supporter of Curbishley, I had misgivings but wanted him to have a fair chance. Now he has gone, like so many fans wanted, lets get a top top manager in and try to move on to that next level like we was promised and us fans need to play our part in that and start getting behind the team!

  91. Graybo says:

    Eric, interesting link, re Bilic… I found the following phrase interesting…

    “Nani’s role as technical director was, initially, understood to be a hurdle for Bilic, but the Hammers are prepared to redefine the role if Bilic arrives at Upton Park.”

    This is not looking good… we’re heading for another change within a couple of years when things don’t work out, I fear (always assuming this goes ahead). Everyone will say ‘yes, yes, Slaven, no problem, we’ll redefine the role’ … and then, bang, hey presto, it all goes pearshaped at the first whiff of trouble

  92. notahappyhamer says:

    hope zola gets it at lest i wud mak 440 quids

  93. sremmah says:

    I have no problem with an Italian manager. In fact I don’t care where he’s from or what he looks like. As long as he brings success to Upton Park – I mean lets face it, we have underachieved for many years as a team despite our rich tradition and list of great players.

    So no, time to step up to the plate and win some silverware with a manager who has form in that regard.


  94. Brian Sains says:

    Iain, name an English manager who could do a good job ?? I have said before, i have faith in BG, i don’t know why, but i just have. Let’s see what happens.

  95. Salmon79 says:

    We need to move on as a club and get with the times, I’m not saying everything that has happended to football is good, however we have to wise up.

    I’m 28 now and other than finishing in the top three once, an FA cup final and winning the inter toto it’s not exactly been a successful 28 years with WHU has it?

    If having an Italian in charge with no local boys in the team means success then I’m prepared to put up with it.

    I’d like to see Di Canio get the assistants job, too soon to manage for him.

  96. yea well says:

    at the end of the day we all want what we see is best for our club and to be honest thats all that really does matter it would be nice to see some silver or a trip into the euros to see a few big name players smashing balls around upton park regardless where they are from i dont belive the club could ever loose who they are coz of us the traditions runs so deep We Are The Acadamy Of Football after all our record for pumping out good English players is second to none from young players like noble to the older players that are now managers like Harry. most of our tradition is within our fan base So

  97. afcam says:

    Everyone keeps Talking about a suitable English Manager! , get with it , get a Scottish one , been the best in the EPL/Div 1 so far


    Collins might fit the bill

  98. madhammer says:

    it would be great to have british manager but none worth having are looking for work and if curbs couldnt get backin of fans collins has no chance . i hope it to be mancini with pdc as no2. football has changed if we like it or not and we have to move on or we will fade and die

  99. mike from Hornchurch says:

    Like most of us i hate change BUT we keep searching for a holy grail which doesn’t exist anymore. Fact is we haven’t won anything for TWENTY EIGHT YEARS!

    If we can maintain the Acadamy (and keep and support our true hero – Tony Carr) and mix that in with a bit of a continental approach then whats wrong with that? Lets give it a go – if we don’t we probably won’t be around for much longer anyway!

    Bring on Bilic or Donadoni or Mancini or Zola!

    Come on you irons!

  100. Zvezda says:

    When someone says they are not being xenophobic we ‘know what time it is’….it’s the same as I’m not racist, but… But what? No Italians? Bring ’em on I say…Mancini and Paolo! Parle Italiano? Si!

  101. supernumbersix says:

    Mancini please. It won’t happen because of the ridiculous money he was on at Inter (5 mil a year i believe) but he should be the one. Donadoni’s style of football will drive us mental at UP. Italy were not the prettiest team to watch at the Euro’s, far too defensive for us, admittedly he had too many injuries to contend with (sounds familiar)but I fear we’d get fed up of him very quickly.
    Please not Jol, Collins etc. Zola could be interesting.

  102. Ian the Hammer says:

    Lets face it Iain, there are no english managers around. Are you saying you wouldn’t want Ferguson, Venger, Scohlari or ,no I’m not going to say the scouse bloke. We certainly don’t want Fat Sam, Hoddle, Venables, Keegan etc etc do we.

  103. Matthew says:

    I disagree with you Iain, this possibly the first time. I want the club to move forward and employ the best manager for the job, italian, french german, scottish whoever, thebest man for whufc. We as supporters must move forward with the times, celebrate thepast but not hold on to it too much. Tradition is important but it doesn’t bring success, in fact sometimes the opposite. Would you settle for Big Sam, just because he is english?

  104. Xcitedhammer says:

    We have bought in some excellent players the last week or so, exciting times around the corner i think. the next manager will be Italian & thats the only reason why Di Michele agreed to come to west ham,why else would he of come?,he had the pick of most of the top clubs in Italy to choose from,Lopez is one of the best up and comming defenders in the world, llunga is very quick and powerful,(sorry Lucas,your days are numbered!) I think we will see more quality players coming onboard, once there contracts at current clubs have expired ! Nani and Kia behind all this, spending the money in a wise manner. Bring on the baggies next sat !

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