West Ham United manager Slaven Bilic has warned his players that they will have to rise to meet higher expectations when they move into London’s Olympic Stadium.
He also warned them that they won’t become world class players because they’re playing in a world class stadium.
Bilic’s team currently sit in sixth place on the Premier League table ahead of Saturday’s clash with Southampton and they could yet mark their last season at Upton Park with qualification for European football next season.
The Croatian played at West Ham during his playing days and drew on the words of former manager Harry Redknapp to get his point across to his players.
“I don’t even know which division Billericay are in but I remember when I was playing here Harry Redknapp always used to use them as an example of a small club or something that was not good,” Bilic explained.
“Billericay could rent Wembley and play their home games there next season, but would that make them a big club or title contenders? No it wouldn’t.
“This is just a step any club wanting to improve has to take, either to build a bigger stadium or rent one for a year or two.
“Unfortunately it does not make you a big club straight away.
“For this to happen you need time, good players, a good team and to be successful consistently for three or four years.
“It was the same with Manchester City when they got all the money. It didn’t happen for them straight after. They took a few years to start winning things.
“I don’t think people will be thinking that just because we are moving there we will be fighting for the Premier League or Champions League.”
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