West Ham United have identified Roberto Di Matteo as their first choice to become their new manager in the summer. The Schalke 04 boss guided Chelsea to Champions League glory in 2012 and he is said to be unsettled with life in Gelsenkirchen.

Sam Allardyce's reign as the Hammers' boss is set to finish at the end of the season with many of the fans calling for his head during the past couple of seasons. He has been at the helm since June 2011 and he guided the club from the Championship to the Premier League and has developed them into an established team in the top tier once again.

His style of play, mixed with some poor results and league positioning in recent seasons have seen the supporters becoming enraged and protesting for him to leave. They started the season exceptionally well and were mixing with the top four for a long while before a dramatic decline has seen them drop to ninth place in the league standings.

The acquisition of the former Chelsea interim boss, Di Matteo, will no doubt delight the fans who are calling for attacking, fluid Football, and they are keen to see a change in the club’s hierarchy.

David Moyes is the favourite to take over as the next manager of West Ham with Rafa Benítez and Slaven Bilić also mentioned. There are a host of good managers in the frame but the chairman is keen to speak with the Italian, Di Matteo.

The Schalke boss took over the job in October last year when the club were eleventh in the Bundesliga and now they are in fifth place and made it to the Champions League last 16, where they were eventually knocked out by Real Madrid despite winning the second leg 4-3 in dramatic fashion.

Whether he gets the job is still very much in the balance but there are many believing the West Ham manager next season will not be Big Sam, whose time looks to be up.

With the Hammers looking to push on next season for European qualification, they may need to change their boss, but also keep hold of their star players. The likes of Winston Reid and Aaron Cresswell in particular are targets for the Premier League’s elite clubs so they will be looking to shut them out, also.

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