LONDON (AP) -- West Ham has hired former defender Slaven Bilic to manage the English Premier League team.
The 46-year-old former Croatia coach has joined on a three-year contract to replace Sam Allardyce, who left West Ham last month at the season's end.
A key priority for Bilic will be ensuring the London club is still a Premier League team for the 2016-17 season, when it starts playing in the Olympic Stadium.
Bilic played for West Ham in 1996-97, and went on to coach Croatia at the 2008 and 2012 European Championships. More recently, Bilic has coached Lokomotiv Moscow and Besiktas.