West Ham United finished the 2018-19 English Premier League campaign in tenth position following 15 wins, seven draws and 16 defeats.
A top-ten finish was expected after manager Manuel Pellegrini arrived at the London Stadium last summer, and the Hammers achieved it brilliantly with a 4-1 win over Watford at Vicarage Road on the last day of the season.
West Ham’s joint-chairmen David Sullivan and David Gold are delighted with the Chilean’s first season in charge of the club, but they couldn’t help but aim a thinly-veiled dig at Tottenham Hotspur in a statement on the club’s official website.
“This time last year, we made a strategic decision to invest significantly in the football operation, appointing a world-class manager and backing him with the largest transfer budget in our history, the first step in a long-term plan that remains on schedule and heading in the right direction,” they wrote on WHUFC.com.
“Manuel Pellegrini and his players have produced some magical moments, marvellous performances and memorable victories – most recently in a certain part of north London! – and, above all, have created a spirit and identity that we believe all Hammers fans have genuine faith in.
“There is great anticipation and excitement about what lies in store for next season, and everyone is looking forward to the challenge of further improving our Premier League position.”
West Ham recorded some impressive results against the league’s powerhouses, but Gold and Sullivan surely take more delight and pride in their side being the first team to hand Tottenham defeat in their new stadium.
The Hammers were brilliant from start to finish at the North London stadium, and Michail Antonio’s 67th-minute strike proved to be the difference, ending Spurs’ run of four consecutive wins in their new ground.
The performance and result highlighted how much West Ham have grown under Pellegrini, and the club chairmen will be hoping he can guide them to the Europa League places next season.