Julen Lopetegui closes on Milan appointment to dash West Ham hopes

Julen Lopetegui closes on Milan appointment to dash West Ham hopes

Milan are close to appointing Julen Lopetegui, which puts him out of the running to replace David Moyes as West Ham’s manager.

Lopetegui was one of the frontrunners for the West Ham job, which is expected to become vacant when Moyes’s deal expires at the end of the season. But Milan are also looking to make a managerial change and they are poised to name the Spaniard as Stefano Pioli’s replacement. Lopetegui is more attracted by the chance to join the Italian giants.

West Ham had held productive talks with Lopetegui, who has been out of work since leaving Wolves last summer. However, key figures at the London Stadium are understood to be split on whether the former Spain and Real Madrid manager is the right man to replace Moyes, whose hopes of earning a new deal are almost over.

West Ham, who still have a chance to qualify for Europe, have also considered Lille’s Paulo Fonseca, Stuttgart’s Sebastian Hoeness, Hansi Flick and Fulham’s Marco Silva. There has been little indication that they will move for Graham Potter.

West Ham held unsuccessful talks with Sporting Lisbon’s Rúben Amorim last Monday and the 39-year-old has apologised to the Portuguese club. “It was a mistake. The timing was completely wrong,” Amorim said. “I’m always asking my players to be respectful … and I wasn’t — even if I informed the club before. I’m so sorry and I apologise to fans, club and players.”

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The Portuguese has missed out on the Liverpool job to Arne Slot. There could be a late U-turn on Moyes if West Ham finish the season strongly.

Source: theguardian.com