West Ham United's turbulent debut season at their new home the London Stadium has taken another twist, with telecom giants Vodafone abandoning their £20million deal to secure the naming rights for the stadia.
Another blow in an already problematic conversion
The debut season at the former Olympic Stadium has been rife with teething problems across the campaign, with crowd trouble blemishing the earlier games of the campaign as the Hammers failed to perform on the newly laid turf. There was also the fiasco surrounding the true cost of converting the stadium's suitability for football, with London Mayor Sadiq Khan aiming to begin an inquiry as it was revealed the conversion cost was around £323m after problems with the retractable seats.
It was expected that the telecoms company would sign a six-year deal after the London Legacy Development Corporation's seven-year search for partners, it is believed that negotiations had broke down between the two parties and had nothing to do with the club's recent HMRC investigation that included the seizing of material from West Ham.
Going to be improving across the board
The incoming news is just another factor to add what has been a generally negative campaign both on and off the pitch for the club, optimism was high after the move from the Boleyn Ground but the club have teetered very close to the relegation zone towards the back of the end of the season which brought pressure on manager Slaven Bilić.
The Croatian managed to steer the ship around with a five-game unbeaten run but that and their first season at the London Stadium was ended in Sunday's 4-0 defeat to Liverpool, Bilić shared his frustration accusing his players of complacency after the game and the Croatian stated that their will be need improvements across the board next season.
“Next season not only do we have to improve our performances," he told whufc.com. "But we need to stay away from injuries and to try to strengthen our squad."
“We need quality in a few positions that we need to improve," the coach admitted to the club's website. "For a lot of games, we were without more than a few players."
"Sometimes we coped with it and played really good and people said ‘We don’t need anyone’," Bilić concluded. "But over the long term, over the season, we need more quality.”