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Liverpool and Man City renew hostilities

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By ESPN Staff

Sullivan: I regret ever hiring Grant

West Ham co-owner David Sullivan has expressed his regret over the appointment of Avram Grant last summer, labelling it a "bad selection" by the board.

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Grant, was hired by the Hammers last May despite having just led Portsmouth to relegation from the Premier League, and he repeated the feat this term - with West Ham rarely leaving the bottom three all season and eventually going down on Sunday after a 3-2 defeat at Wigan.

The Israeli was sacked by co-owners Sullivan and David Gold within an hour of the final whistle and leaves Upton Park with an unimpressive record, which has seen him spend 67 of the past 71 weeks in the relegation zone with Pompey and then the Hammers.

Sullivan and Gold sounded out Martin O'Neill about replacing Grant in January but after being snubbed they ended up giving the former Chelsea boss an unconvincing vote of confidence.

"The entire board is 100% behind Avram," Sullivan told ESPNsoccernet in January. "He is a really decent person who deserves our support."

While Sullivan still believes Grant is a favourable character, the Hammers co-owner says that, in retrospect, hiring him was the wrong decision.

"Avram is a lovely person but the results sadly speak for themselves that it was a bad selection by the board,'' Sullivan told The Sun. "We all share some blame for the results - the board, the manager and the team.

"However, the team can only play the tactics and formation they are asked to play. We want a manager who will get the best out of the squad and foster a strong team spirit.''

Sullivan also moved to ease fears that relegation from the top flight would have dire financial implications for the club.

"Debts will fall as we [the owners] will put in more money,'' he said. The financial burden to us and our families will rise, not the debts of the club.''

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