David Moyes has declared his desire to build upon West Ham’s brilliant 2023 and confessed his love for the club is continuing to grow.

No matter your opinion on the football West Ham play under David Moyes, it is impossible to argue against the success he has had in his second spell  at the club. He brought European football back to East London, in which he has earned back-to-back semi-finals, as well as guiding them to their first piece of major silverware since 1980, and now has given the Hammers the best start to a Premier League season in their history.

Given the last two of those happened within the last 6 months, it is unsurprising that Moyes looks back on 2023 as the best year in his career. 

“I look back at things at times,” he began telling WHUFC.com. “I think, because of winning the UEFA Europa Conference League trophy, I would have to say that, yes, it has been [my best year as a manager]. It was difficult for the first part of last season but, once we got back around after the World Cup, I think we really improved in the second half of last season. We’ve just had our best start to a Premier League season at West Ham and I’d have to say, because of winning the trophy, the second half of last season was probably our best finish.”

“The last few weeks have been tough. I think it’s only Liverpool and Manchester City who have played more games than us in the last couple of years. But we’ve shown some resilience and picked up good results. In the main, the boys here have done a great job and 2023 has been a great year for us.”

This season has been full of phenomenal results for the Hammers, with 2-0 wins against both Manchester United and Arsenal closing out the year. However, no win was more surprising than the win against tonight’s opponents Brighton. It took West Ham over 6 seasons to finally beat the Seagulls and, understandably, the gaffer is still very aware of the threat they pose.

“Brighton have been our bogey team over many seasons here at West Ham,” he confirmed. “We broke the hoodoo earlier this season down at their place. I have to say though, Robert De Zerbi has brought something different to the Premier League. I think there are so many good young coaches out there and De Zerbi is one of them. They’re a good model of a football club and you can only admire them.”

Clearly, Moyes loves West Ham. He has stated time and time again his desire to stay at the helm in order to continue this project that he is building. Even though he has achieved so much, he wants to continue progressing at a club that his affection continues to grow for.

“Everything at the Club has grown. We’ve grown. We’re trying to challenge right at the top. We’re never going to say we’re not going for it, in terms of Europe. I’m trying to continue growth at this Club. We have to keep progressing and moving forward. If we can finish in Europe again, then it would be an incredible achievement.”

“This place means a lot to me. West Ham has really grown on me and, to be fair, the Club grew on me when I was here in my first spell too. This second time, I’m enjoying it even more.”

It can not be understated how important tonight’s game is. Something that our Irons have continually struggled with is winning those crucial games to solidify their chances of getting Europe again. But, as Brighton are riddled with injuries, tonight is the perfect time to set the standards for the whole of 2024. 

A win moves them just 4 points away from the top 4 – is it too early to dream of hearing the Champions League theme tune blasting around the London Stadium?