New West Ham boss Slaven Bilic hits back at criticism and blames lack of major trophy on travelling circus

Besiktas Fans1

New West Ham United manager Slaven Bilic has hit back at criticism of his lack of silverware and insists he should already have a league title on his CV.

The former Croatia, Lokomotiv Moscow and Besiktas boss was appointed Sam Allardyce's successor in East London last week.

And while his appointment has been welcomed by most fans, players and pundits, some have questioned his record given he is yet to win any silverware as a manager.

While his time in charge of his national team was regarded as an overwhelming success, as a club manager he has not made a name for himself in the same way someone like Jose Mourinho did in Portugal, or Unai Emery in Spain.

It has left some Hammers fans questioning whether he is really the man to take the club on to the next level, given the Upton Park faithful's own 35-year wait for a trophy.

But Bilic has defended his record and says the only reason he did not win the league in Turkey is because the club did not have its own ground.

Besiktas' Inönü stadium was being rebuilt during his two years there and will not reopen until next season leaving them to travel miles to play their "home" games in Istanbul, Konya and Ankara.

He told Fanatik: "I can say this without any reservations one of the key factors behind Beşiktaş not winning the league was not having a stadium.

“If we had our own stadium more decisions would have gone our way and we would have got better results it is very different playing at home.”

Many see Bilic's time at Besiktas as him leading the second biggest club in the country to back-to-back third place finishes.

And before that a pretty disastrous spell at Lokomotiv saw him lose as many games as he won before being sacked.

But there were mitigating circumstances during both spells.

Besiktas were under their self-imposed Feda (sacrifice) regime where they were forced to sell players and even the club's office equipment to pay down debt.

If anything the job he did under such circumstances is all the more remarkable, particularly given that he filled the side with a number of young, hungry Turkish players playing what was regarded as the best football in the league.

While his record in Moscow does raise question marks, they are a club where the top five is the expectation and with the league becoming ever more competitive he struggled to make the kind of impact he would have wanted.

However, the club did finish ninth and he was not given much of a chance to push things forward as he was sacked after the first season.

Whatever his CV says Hammers fans will be hoping his success against English teams in Europe with Besiktas will be a good omen for his first managerial job in the Premier League.

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