West Ham United made wholesale changes when they appointed Manuel Pellegrini and chief amongst them was the introduction of a director of football.
Angry supporters had protested for co-owners David Sullivan and David Gold to sell up or change their ways.
In a bid to appease fans the Hammers pushed the boat out to bring in title-winning boss Pellegrini.
And as Sullivan stuck to his pledge to step back from player recruitment in came Pellegrini’s former talent spotter Mario Husillos.
Hailed to failed?
The Argentine was hailed for his work last season with the likes of Issa Diop, Fabian Balbuena, Felipe Anderson and Hammer of the Year Lukasz Fabianski doing him proud.
Husillos’s appointment had been fully vindicated.
But his future has been the subject of much speculation of late.
West Ham’s eight-game winless run cast the future of both Husillos and Pellegrini into the spotlight.
Unlike other directors at rival Premier League clubs, Husillos keeps a very low profile.
He is rarely mentioned in club media updates. Meanwhile the likes of Marcel Brands of Everton are very much in the public eye.
But The Guardian reported that West Ham’s nosedive in form had raised serious questions over Husillos’s future.
Questions raised over Husillos dealings
The £24million signing of Pablo Fornals and that of his fellow Spaniard Roberto were being used as rod to beat Husillos.
With his job reportedly on the line, Husillos could be forgiven for maintaining a low profile.
And he did just that at Stamford Bridge.
Eagle-eyed West Ham fans may have seen the lesser-spotted Husillos as he was captured on Match of the Day’s TV cameras.
Husillos went somewhat incognito in the stands alongside Hammers legend Trevor Brooking, former owner turned stakeholder Terence Brown and (out of shot) co-owner David Gold.
Sporting a baseball cap emblazoned with the letter P – perhaps in supporter of Pellegrini! – he witnessed a huge, shocking but thoroughly deserved win for the Hammers.
P for Team Pellegrini!?
Whether his case was hurt or helped by the starring role Roberto’s replacement David Martin played in the victory remains to be seen.
If Husillos was responsible for Martin’s signing then he would have enjoyed the performance as much as everyone else connected with the club.
If not then it may just raise further doubts over his dealings. West Ham fans are a knowledgeable bunch, though.
There is no getting away from the fact Roberto on a free has been an unmitigated disaster. But Hammers supporters know the owners’ lack of spending makes them just as – if not more – culpable.
West Ham have spent just £115million net over three windows since Pellegrini was appointed.
For context that is a meagre amount considering West Ham had battled relegation for two years prior.
That amount is £35million less than the likes of Aston Villa splashed out in a single window over the summer.