Hammers legend - This is another big year for Payet

When it comes to legendary midfielders at West Ham United they don't come much bigger than Alan Devonshire.

The Hammers fans' favourite made 448 appearances and scored 32 goals during a memorable spell in east London.

Dimitri Payet has wasted no time becoming a cult hero with the West Ham fans and Devonshire knows more than most what is needed to win over the Hammers fans.


Devonshire is hoping the French superstar can grow even stronger next season and help the Club move onto the next level when they prepare for a historic move into the new Stadium....

When you look back at the final ever season at the Boleyn Ground, do you think the team did everyone proud with what they achieved over the season?

AD: “They made everyone proud. It was a pity that we could not get to the FA Cup Final when Manchester United beat us, but we made up for it in the final ever home game.

“They have had a great season and hopefully they can now push on and add a few more players. It will be nice to get into the European places on a regular basis.”

The Club are preparing to make a historic move this summer. Do you think it can help West Ham move onto another level?

AD: “I do think that can be the case. With investment coming in, it might help the club push on.

“As Leicester have shown it is not always about money and to be fair to Slaven he has done really well in his first year in charge.

“I am pleased with how the team spirit seems to be running through the side and that is the main thing in any team.

“Hopefully he can build on that and with Julian Dicks involved as well, that is a big thing because he knows what the fans want. Hopefully they can both build on that next year. I wish them both all the best.”

You entertained the fans when you were playing at West Ham United and Dimitri Payet certainly did that last season. How excited have you been by his arrival at the Club and the impact he has made at West Ham?

AD: “He has been great. He is 29 and is the finished article. He has not got anything to learn.

“He will be tested next year because the first one is always the easiest. But he is now showing what he can do for France at the Euros and hopefully he can push on even more for West Ham over the next three or four years.”

Why do you think the West Ham fans have taken to him so quickly?

AD: “He is totally different. He has got great feet and takes a great free-kick. He works hard for the team. The West Ham fans work hard and that is why they have probably taken to him.”

What can you say about Slaven Bilic and the job he has done at West Ham during his first season in charge?

AD:Slaven has done a great job. It will also be his second year at the Club and we will need to see how he does with the move into the new Stadium.

“It will be new for everyone and I just hope we do well and keep the season-tickets sold out for the next few years.”

How impressed are you with the support from the West Ham fans and the fact we have sold out all the season-tickets for the new Stadium?

AD: “What more can I say about the fans. I played at West Ham for such a long time and the fan base was always massive.

“When I first joined there was always a big waiting list of fans wanting to get season-tickets.

“The base was always there and now we are moving I have no doubts we will continue to sell out the stadium if the team are doing well.”

Can the Hammers follow in the footsteps of Leicester and challenge for the Premier League title?

AD: “Why not? They have showed it can be done and it is not just about money and these big clubs. It is about team spirt and the balance of your squad so why can't it be done again.”