By Nick Harris
20 May 2010
Avram Grant is “more than 90 per cent certain” to be manager of West Ham within a week according to a high-level source, speaking after Grant posted an emotional resignation letter to Portsmouth fans on the Pompey website this evening.
The Israeli, 55, has been the No1 choice of West Ham’s co-owners David Sullivan and David Gold to succeed Gianfranco Zola since the Italian was sacked earlier this month, the source said. West Ham did not move for Grant officially until Portsmouth’s FA Cup final against Chelsea was out the way.
Grant has not yet signed his contract at Upton Park, but is expected to do so in the coming days.
“This was one of the most difficult decisions I’ve had to take in my football career,” he said in his letter to Pompey fans.
“After a lot of soul searching and under the circumstances I’m taking a different direction.
“It’s been both a difficult and complex year for us at the club, but at the same time, it’s been a wonderful and uplifting professional and personal experience.
“I have been inundated with letters and emails from fans. Many have brought tears to my eyes and take it from me; it takes a lot to do that.
“I will never forget you, the loyal fans of Pompey who, without a doubt, helped me protect the team under such complex circumstances. There are very few teams in the world that have fans as passionate and devoted as you are.
“Seeing you all so proud with your heads held up high is the best reward I can receive.
“It has been a great experience to be part of one of the most wonderful occurrences that has happened in the history of British football and also shows that even in the most desperate times, loyalty, devotion, professionalism and passion can be demonstrated.
“I wish you all the possible success which you genuinely deserve.
“Portsmouth has given me a feeling of home away from home. I might be leaving Portsmouth physically, but you cannot take Portsmouth away from me and my heart.”