football

Ruben Amorim: West Ham exploring Sporting Lisbon boss as option with David Moyes' future uncertain

West Ham are doing due diligence on a number of managers, including Sporting Lisbon head coach Ruben Amorim and ex-Wolves boss Julen Lopetegui, should David Moyes leave the club at the end of the season.

Reports emerged on Monday that West Ham have held talks with Amorim, who is also a Liverpool managerial target, but West Ham are not commenting on those reports.

The Irons are doing their due diligence on Amorim and Lopetegui, with Moyes' contract expiring this summer and the Scot, publicly at least, yet to make a decision on his future.

Moyes said in February that he had been offered a new deal, but West Ham doing their due diligence should not come as a surprise in terms of future planning.

Sunday's heavy 5-2 defeat at Crystal Palace damaged the club's hopes of securing European football for the fourth consecutive season at the London Stadium.

West Ham sit eighth and have just four games left, including matches against Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester City.

Last season Moyes guided the club to Europa Conference League glory - their first European trophy since 1965 - but West Ham have won just four games out of 21 played in 2024.

If Moyes' second spell in charge of West Ham is brought to an end this summer, then it would be likely that technical director Tim Steidten's power at the club would be increased.

When Moyes was re-appointed in December 2019, it was under the proviso he would have a bigger say on recruitment compared to his first spell.

But upon Steidten's appointment in July 2023, West Ham said the German, who previously worked at Bayer Leverkusen and Werder Bremen, would be "responsible for the club's overarching player recruitment strategy and scouting department".

A potential move for Amorim is ambitious considering he is in the running to replace Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool, while the 39-year-old has also been linked with the Bayern Munich job.

Amorim is on course to win the Portuguese league with Sporting this season with his side sitting 10 points clear of Benfica at the top, while they are also in the Portuguese Cup final.

Lopetegui is another manager West Ham are doing due diligence on.

The 57-year-old, who has managed Spain, Real Madrid and Sevilla, has been out of work since leaving Wolves just three days before the start of the Premier League season in August.

Therefore, any interested parties would not be required to negotiate with another club for his services, unlike the under-contract Amorim.

It has long been inevitable that Ruben Amorim would be in demand. Winning the title with Sporting in 2021 at the age of 36 all but guaranteed that. The fact that he is on course to repeat the feat in 2024 only underlines his ability as a coach.

Sporting recognised that this was a special talent very early, famously paying a huge release clause after his spectacular start at Braga. They bet on his tactical mind, his fierce commitment as a player, but more than anything on the power of his personality.

In conversation with a series of Portuguese coaches, some of whom have pitted their wits against Amorim this season, we will explore his rise, what it is that makes him so impressive as a coach, and, crucially, whether this can be translated into his next job.

Read Adam Bate's Amorim feature in full here.

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