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West Ham chief Sullivan sets out reasons to sack manager

West Ham United co-owner David Sullivan says nine defeats on the trot would see manager Avram Grant sacked.

Sullivan reckons analysing results and, in particular, the 'L' column in league tables has led him to believe nine is the magic - or tragic - number when it comes to getting rid of the boss.

After Freddie Piquionne's 29th-minute headed winner ended a run of four consecutive defeats, Sully revealed: "I've always said no manager can survive nine defeats in a row.

"That's my theory. Alex Ferguson at United and Arsene Wenger at Arsenal probably could - but if you look historically no one survives nine defeats.

"We were four ninths of the way there but it's a long way between four and nine.

"Despite our start, no doubts ever crept in. Some teams start well and die. Others start badly and come good. But, overall, we're improving. That result over Tottenham was the sweetest win but we're still in the bottom three.

"We won't kid ourselves. If the season finished tomorrow, we'd be relegated but this is a better team. I've been at Birmingham with relegated teams. This isn't a relegation team.

"I'm not kidding myself because this was a really good performance against Tottenham.

"I'm pleased for the manager but he will tell you he's building something."

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