Slaven Bilic: West Ham appoint former defender as manager
Last updated on .From the section West Ham
West Ham have named former defender Slaven Bilic as their new manager.
The 46-year-old replaces Sam Allardyce, who left by mutual consent last month after the Hammers finished 12th in the Premier League.
Bilic, who has signed a three-year deal, said: "It is a great place to play and I felt like I was at home."
He played 54 times for the Upton Park side between 1996 and 1997 and managed Croatia for six years, beating England twice in the Euro 2008 qualifiers.
He was also manager at Lokomotiv Moscow and Besiktas, whom he left in May.
"It is a big privilege and a big responsibility to now be manager and I hope that I will prove it to the board, players and fans," he added.
"When I spoke to the chairmen and Karren Brady, they made clear that it is not only the fantastic new [Olympic] Stadium we are moving into, but they showed their determination and ambition to make what is a big club even bigger.
"I could feel that they really wanted me so it was an easy choice. I would say to the West Ham fans that I will give my best and together we will achieve great things.
"I remember West Ham as a special club. My last club, Besiktas, was that kind of club. It's not about the size - there is something special about them - they are a cult club."
In May he announced his intention to leave Turkish side Besiktas, after failing to win the league title in his two years at the Istanbul club and missing out on Champions League qualification for next season.
Bilic spent 2012-13 in charge of Lokomotiv, but was sacked after leading them to a ninth-place finish, their worst season since the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991.