Son of West Ham co-owner David Sullivan lauds Slaven Bilic and says players respect new boss

Jack Sullivan, the son of West Ham United co-owner David, has lauded new manager Slaven Bilic and revealed he already has the respect of the club's players.

Writing in his own column on West Ham's official website, Sullivan junior said he was excited to meet the club's new boss after a winning start to the new season in the Europa League last week.

The Hammers were the first Premier League side back in competitive action as they brushed aside Andorran minnows FC Lusitans 3-0 in their Europa League first round qualifier.

Bilic replaced Sam Allardyce in the Hammers hotseat last month as the club look to move on to the next level playing a different, more attractive style of football.

And now young Jack has lifted the lid on how the club's players already respect their new manager after just one week in charge.

"I was able to meet Slaven for the first time which I was really excited about," he wrote on

"I listened to what James Tomkins had to say after the game and that you cannot hear a pin drop when the manager speaks in the dressing room.

"That shows the respect that all the players have towards him."

Sam Allardyce was yesterday's man

Even the harshest Sam Allardyce critic would agree he did a sterling job at West Ham over his four-year tenure.

The former Newcastle United and Blackburn Rovers boss had always divided opinion at Upton Park.

His skill set was what West Ham needed. He picked the club off the floor, rejuvenated the dressing room, made as many bad signings as he did good, and by hook or crook - and a fair slice of fortune - got them promoted back to the Premier League at the first attempt through the play-offs.

Season two, the Hammers finished 10th in the top tier, season three 13th and season four 12th.

A solid record if ever there was one but nothing that will live too long in the memory of even the most dedicated Hammers fan.

The straw that broke the camel's back is that this season could have been so much better.

Bilic has reinvigorated the whole club

As good a job Allardyce did at West Ham, though, it was far from perfect.

The style and the defensive setup, particularly away from home, grated on many fans. And when the club won just three games in 2015 change was inevitable.

Bilic may not have been first choice but as a former player who understands what the Upton Park faithful want from their managers, players and team he already has a distinct advantage.

An astonishing 35,000 fans selling out the club's first leg Europa League game against Andorran part-timers tells you all you need to know about how the supporters feel going into a new season with Bilic at the helm.

Optimism abounds in the dressing room too with players remarking just how good and sharp training has been under the new regime.

Whether the happy marriage lasts remains to be seen, but there will certainly be an enjoyable honeymoon.

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