Andy Townsend gives his appraisal of West Ham boss Slaven Bilic

West Ham Upton Park

Andy Townsend says he is impressed with West Ham, particularly their manager.

Andy Townsend has told BBC Radio 5 Live that he has been impressed with Slaven Bilic this season and believes West Ham are playing free from pressure.

Speaking to the station's Monday Night Club, former Premier League midfielder and Republic of Ireland international Townsend said he was a fan of the former Croatia manager.

He said: "I really like Slaven Bilic as a manager. I like him when he's won, he's honest, and when he loses he doesn't try to cover anything up, gives honest answers, I like his style.

"The West Ham team he's got at the moment is fundamentally based on hard work and running power in the team and a bit of star power from Payet, and Lanzini when he plays. They are a dangerous team, playing pressure free football, with a smart manager."

Townsend went on to add that he was impressed with Bilic picking the right times to play Andy Carroll and change the team's system, and when to leave him on the bench.

The Hammers are in a fine run of form right now, knocking Liverpool out of the FA Cup last month, also winning close games against Tottenham Hotspur and Everton over the past week.

They are flying in the Premier League, in fifth place above Manchester United and just one point off the top four, although Manchester City in fourth do have a game in hand.

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