Football: West Ham manager Sam Allardyce says that details of contract negotiations between him and the club’s owners must remain secret.
The Englishman returned the Irons to the top flight this season and the club currently sit comfortably mid-table — 11th — despite a recent run of poor form that has seen them win just twice in 2013.
Hammers co-chairman David Gold said on Sunday that talk of a new deal for Allardyce, whose current contract is up at the end of the season, will have to wait until Premier League survival has been assured and the manager concurred with that outlook.
“I know my relationship with David Sullivan and David Gold well and the conversations that we have remain confidential,” Allardyce said.
“I’m more than happy to do the job that I’m doing right now and speculation regarding my contract situation has nothing to do with anybody else but the owners.”
The Irons hierarchy are believed to be satisfied with the team’s performance this season, though not on Sunday when they lost 2-1 at struggling Aston Villa.
Gold took to Twitter in the aftermath of the loss, saying: “Disappointed for the fans who travelled hundreds of miles on a miserable day to lose to a team in the bottom three. We should do better.”
Avoiding relegation, Gold added, is the main reason for putting Allardyce’s contract talks on hold for now.
“As David Sullivan and I have always maintained, we will sit down and discuss Sam’s contract situation once our Premier League status has been confirmed and not before,” Gold said.
“This is purely because the three of us don’t want anything to distract attention from our aim of finishing as high up the Premier League table as possible.
“Sam did a fantastic job of gaining promotion from the Championship at the first attempt last season and we are all pleased with how quickly he has got the team to adapt to life back in the Premier League.
“We went into Sunday’s game with Aston Villa one place off the top 10 and that is no mean feat for a newly promoted side.
“West Ham fans have much to look forward to in the coming years and we hope Sam Allardyce will play a big part in our exciting plans.”
Meanwhile Arsenal defender Andre Santos has joined Gremio on loan until the end of the season, the Premier League club announced today.
Santos moved to Arsenal from Fenerbahce in August 2011, but has failed to hold down a regular place in Arsene Wenger’s first team.
The form of Kieran Gibbs and the arrival of Nacho Monreal means the Brazilian left-back has made only six starts for the Londoners this season and he has now been given a chance to play regular football back in his homeland.
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