Premier League


West Ham defender James Collins believes his side have let manager Slaven Bilic down following their poor start to the season.

The Croatian is a man under pressure, with the East Londoners bottom of the Premier League having lost all three games so far while Bilic’s situation has not been helped by comments himself and co-owner David Sullivan have made concerning transfer targets.

But now Collins feels West Ham’s players owe their manager, having also admitted they have not given their all in the opening fixtures. Monday night against Huddersfield at the London Stadium offers them the chance to finally kickstart their season, on the day of Bilic’s 49th birthday.

“Birthday or not everyone at the club would like to get the boss three points,” said the no-nonsense defender Collins. “He’s been under tremendous pressure. It’s crazy in football that the managers get put under so much pressure when sometimes really the players need to look at themselves.”

Collins’ former West Ham and Wales team-mate Danny Gabbidon claimed this week that Bilic looked lost after the defeat at Newcastle last time out, an opinion that is not shared inside the Hammers’ dressing room.

Bilic will spend his birthday looking for West Ham’s first points of the season. James Collins believes three away matches can’t be an excuse for West Ham United’s disappointing start to the season but insists those wrongs can be put right against Huddersfield Town.

The Hammers will return to the London Stadium for their first home contest of the campaign on Monday evening against the Terriers. David Wagner’s recently promoted team will provide a stern test in Stratford for West Ham, having impressed so far on their return to the top flight of English football. But Collins feels he and his teammates have a brilliant chance in front of the loyal home support and the Sky Sports cameras to show just what they’re capable of in this fixture.