Simply Slaven - Part One


In the first part of our exclusive interview with Slaven Bilic, the Hammers manager looks back at a successful transfer window and explains why he brought World Cup winner Alvaro Arbeloa into the squad on deadline day.

Arbeloa has a wealth of experience having won the Champions League with Real Madrid and will provide strong competition with Sam Byram for the right back position.

Bilic said: “His CV is top of course. He was at Liverpool so he knows the Premier League. He had 10 years at Real Madrid and won everything. We were looking to strengthen that position, at least short-term and he was available and simply the perfect option what we needed.

“We watched a lot of Real Madrid games like everybody else and he’s a great professional, a player of great experience and I’m sure he’s going to help us a lot. Make no mistake, he’s coming here as a player, not as a mentor, not as a coach. “

After bringing in 13 players over the summer, Bilic was thrilled to have secured the signing of Simone Zaza from Juventus and reveals what what the Italy international could bring to the Premier League this season.

He added: “He’s still young, hungry, great left foot, goalscorer, bit of that drive and positive wildness on the pitch that is very important for the team, the crowd.”

The Hammers manager explains why he made the decision to allow Enner Valencia to join Everton and says it could favour the player and the Club in the long-term.

Bilic was also thrilled to see Michail Antonio earn his first call-up to the England squad this week and says it is just rewards for a player who has a similar story to Jamie Vardy and has worked his way from non-league into the Premier League.

Don't miss Part Two on Sunday when Bilic reveals his delight at keeping Dimitri Payet at the Hammers and gives his feelings on the 'crazy money' that is being spent in the top flight.