Sullivan backs Bilic to reverse Hammers' fortunes

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Co-owner David Sullivan has backed Slaven Bilic to restore West Ham's shattered confidence and called for everyone at the Premier League strugglers to show unity.

Bilic led the Hammers to a seventh-place finish in his first season as manager and the club were at one stage in the battle for a top-four berth.

It has been a different story this time around, however, with West Ham languishing just one point above the relegation zone.

The mood at London Stadium was particularly sombre on Saturday as Arsenal ran riot in a 5-1 victory, with Alexis Sanchez scoring a dazzling hat-trick.

The pressure has consequently grown on manager Bilic, but Sullivan says the Croatian has earned time to turn West Ham's flagging fortunes around.

"I saw Slaven's comments after the game and as always he was completely honest with his assessment," Sullivan said via a lengthy statement on the club's official website.

"Slaven cares passionately about the football club and this defeat will be hurting him as much as anyone.

"I have no doubts that he is doing everything he can to address the situation and everyone is working together to ensure we turn our season around.

"We cannot forget the amazing job that Slaven did in his first season at the club. With a bit more luck he could have taken us into the top four.

"His passion, commitment and outstanding track record at the highest level were among the many reasons we appointed Slaven in 2015.

"Despite what some people have said, there is still a great spirit among the players and everyone is working towards the same objective.

"We all need to stick together and get behind the team. We are all part of the West Ham United family and in hard times families pull together."