Report: Ex-Watford boss Walter Mazzarri emerges as West Ham's favoured Slaven Bilic replacement

West Ham United's Croatian manager Slaven Bilic reacts on the touchline during the English Premier League football match between West Ham United and Brighton and Hove Albion at The London...

The axe appears to be hanging above Slaven Bilic at West Ham with the former Watford manager Walter Mazzarri in the frame.

West Ham United's Croatian manager Slaven Bilic reacts on the touchline during the English Premier League football match between West Ham United and Brighton and Hove Albion at The London...

Slaven Bilic insisted that he wasn’t worried after West Ham’s 3-0 home defeat to newly promoted Brighton on Friday night. Though that is not a feeling shared by the club’s fans – or, it seems, the owners.

Sky Sports reported on Sunday that Davids Gold and Sullivan have given the under-siege Bilic two games to save his job – the EFL Cup clash with Spurs on Wednesday and the Premier League clash with struggling Crystal Palace on Saturday.

Bilic, who replaced Sam Allardyce in 2015, is out of contract at the end of the season but with West Ham making their worst start to a league campaign since they were relegated in 2010/11 the Croatian could be forced out of the club even earlier.

Slaven Bilic, Manager of West Ham United looks on prior to the Premier League match between West Ham United and Brighton and Hove Albion at London Stadium on October 20, 2017 in London,...

And it seems The Hammers already have a replacement in mind. Tuttomercatoweb claim that West Ham have already made contact with former Watford boss Walter Mazzarri and, with Bilic seemingly closer to the sack than ever, the prospect of the Italian returning to Premier League football has vastly increased.

The report adds that Leicester City, who sacked Craig Shakespeare last week, are also interested. As are Everton, with Ronald Koeman certain to come under increased scrutiny after the 5-2 battering at home to Arsenal on Sunday.

Mazzarri, however, is understood to prefer West Ham to Leicester and Everton. Whether supporters share the former Inter and Napoli boss’ enthusiasm remains to be seen.

Walter Mazzarri, Manager of Watford reacts during the Premier League match between Watford and Manchester City at Vicarage Road on May 21, 2017 in Watford, England.

Mazzarri was far from popular at Watford, his inability to learn the language creating a barrier with supporters and a series of alleged disagreements with key players causing problems behind the scenes.

And that’s without mentioning a collapse in the second half of the season that left Watford finishing 17th.

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