Slaven Bilic is happy to be unpopular if he believes he is taking the right decisions for West Ham.
The under-pressure manager twice last month, against Huddersfield and Swansea, heard the club’s supporters boo his substitutions before they proved decisive in winning each game.
Summer signing Javier Hernandez also appeared unhappy when being replaced against Swansea when the score remained 0-0, and each incident came after a difficult start to the season in which the home fans chanted about Bilic being sacked.
Their recent improvement has eased some of the pressure that had built, but Bilic said: “It’s better to be clapped than booed, but at the end of the day I have to trust my decisions.
“Those decisions gave us what we wanted. But it doesn’t have to be that the next time we will make the same decision.
“Nobody is (undroppable), as a manager a big part of your job is to make decisions. Is it before a game? Is it during training? Are they football decisions or non-football decisions because of the group of people you are leading?
“The game decisions are very important ones. They are crucial. In the last game me and my staff took the decision because it was the right decision to make. We don’t know how it will end; you never know, but it ended really good.”
Bilic has this week spoken of his optimism at finally having the options he envisaged following the summer arrivals of Hernandez, Marko Arnautovic and Joe Hart.
Only James Collins, owing to an ankle injury, is absent from Saturday’s trip to Burnley, and Diafra Sakho’s three goals from his past three appearances means he is another in contention.
“I bet you if I ask you the question would you play Andy (Carroll)? You would say yes. Would you play Chicharito? You would say yes. Some of you would put someone else in also, either (Andre) Ayew or Michail Antonio. It’s difficult to put them all on the pitch.
“I’ve had both ends, when I had no options and very rarely when we have all the options. This is much better. That is much better to have this kind of situation than to have to put your midfielder to centre-forward.”