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Allardyce hits back at sack talk.. but admits he could be gone before Olympic Stadium move

West Ham United manager Sam Allardyce. (pic: Barrington Coombs/PA) West Ham United manager Sam Allardyce. (pic: Barrington Coombs/PA)

Saturday, May 10, 2014
8:10 AM

Sam Allardyce insists he has delivered all that was expected of him as West Ham manager this season, but admits the odds are stacked against him still being in charge when the Hammers move into the Olympic Stadium in 2016.

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Allardyce’s future at Upton Park is shrouded in uncertainty, with some reports suggesting Sunday’s clash against Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium could be his last in charge of the Hammers.

The former Newcastle, Blackburn and Bolton boss has come under intense pressure this season due to the Hammers’ inconsistent form and unattractive playing style, with many fans now calling on the clubs owners to wield the axe.

But West Ham are safe from relegation and sit 12th in the table after last weekend’s 2-0 win over Tottenham, and Allardyce argues that he’s met this season’s targets.

“I’ve delivered what I’ve been asked to deliver,” he said. “I can’t really extend it beyond that. What I’ve been asked to do, I have done.

“From my point of view, I could have done better, we all could have, there’s no doubt about that.

“But at the end of the day, we’re still where we planned to be. We haven’t been fighting against relegation like lots of other teams over the last few weeks, we cured that six or seven weeks ago.

“If I did what [Sunderland manager] Gus Poyet did now, instead of then, would everyone be singing my praises?

“Probably, yes, but life is changing all the time in football. One week you’re the best thing since sliced bread, the next week you’re not. That’s part of the volatile Barclays Premier League that we’re in now.”

Allardyce admits his future is far from assured, however, and when asked if he expects to be the man to lead West Ham into the Olympic Stadium, he said: “With the average life of a manager being only 13 months, on averages you would have to say no.”

While West Ham’s fans are striving for more than relegation battles and mid-table finishes, Allardyce suggests his own ambitions are even loftier than the club’s.

“I was at Bolton for seven or eight years and I left there because there was no ambition left at the club for me to try and achieve what I wanted,” he said.

“That club decided my fate by telling me they didn’t want to go any further, they didn’t want to be any better than they were, and that wasn’t good enough for me.

“I want to get better. I have more ambition than West Ham… or the same ambition as them.

“I want to get into Europe, I want to get into the new stadium, I want to win a cup.

“If I don’t have ambition or drive or self-motivation, I don’t do this job.

“I’ve seen it all before and you use your experience to try and achieve that ambition.

The glory of the game is intriguing in many ways, because it’s a love-hate relationship. When things are going well and you’re with the lads and when you come in every day with the team, that’s what you do it for. It’s in your blood, it’s like an addiction.”

Asked if he feels West Ham can match his ambitions, he said: “Eventually, yes. We all work together at what we have to achieve.

“I understand that budgeting and money is not as free flowing here as in other places, so we have to tread carefully about how we spend our money.

“But that doesn’t stop us getting there, it’s whether anybody’s patient enough to wait for us to get there.

“That’s the problem today, there’s a lack of patience across the board.”

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