Former West Ham United striker Tony Cottee feels Slaven Bilic has plenty of positives to work with, revealing his thoughts when he appeared on talkSPORT following the Croatian’s appointment as the club’s new manager.
Cottee feels West Ham are in good shape as Bilic looks to tweak things ahead of the qualifiers for the Europa League and then the return of the Premier League this August.
“There are some really good players in the squad, the goalkeeper has done well, the left-back Aaron Cresswell was the player of the season – there are enough centre backs, some good midfielders and up front there’s Sakho and Valencia and Andy Carroll’s coming back,” he said.
The Hammers have already snapped up midfielder Pedro Obiang on a long term deal and the boss will be looking at improving other areas of the team.
Where does Bilic still need players?
There is a definite question mark hanging over the side at right-back.
The Daily Mail has reported that Sunderland have agreed a £2 million fee with Arsenal to sign Carl Jenkinson, who was efficient at right-back for West Ham last season.
The newspaper suggests that the Hammers are still interested and it’s an area Bilic will have to look at if they can’t compete and retain him.
There’s also an arguable need for a winger to come into the squad, which is an area Cottee didn’t mention when he talked to talkSPORT.
Enner Valencia could play in a wider role and Bilic could also turn to his old club Besiktas if he feels he needs a player out wide.
How should he approach the Europa League qualifiers?
It will be interesting to see if Bilic goes with a stronger side for the Europa League qualifiers.
On the one hand, it’s a good idea because it’s an early chance for the team to get some competitive action under their belts, but on the other hand, there are going to be some players who are behind in terms of their fitness.
A better approach could be one or two senior figures, with a predominantly younger and fresher looking team.