Sam Allardyce has admitted the time was right to leave West Ham after the club confirmed his four-year reign had drawn to a close.
The Hammers announced the 60-year-old’s impending departure within minutes of the final whistle in their 2-0 Barclays Premier League defeat at Newcastle.
Allardyce later revealed he is to take a break from football to spend time with his family and wait for the right next job to come along.
He said: “I thought it was time to leave, I thought it was the right time to leave. For me, four years is a long enough spell.
“You don’t want to overstay your welcome and like I said, you have to commit your whole life to being a Premier League manager.
“You are under scrutiny all the time and you have to be totally obsessed with the job to get it right, and particularly your family, you have to ignore that side.
“They worry for you, they support you. They are down when you’re down, they’re up when you’re up, so it does become a bit of a strain on them, particularly your wife, so it’s time to have that break.
“It’s leaving on a high for me – not a high today the way we performed in the second half – but leaving on a high, and walking away from a football club that has achieved so much in the last four seasons is something I am very proud of.”
Slaven Bilic has been installed as the bookmakers’ favourite to succeed Allardyce at Upton Park with joint-owners David Gold and David Sullivan having paid tribute to a manager who was far from universally popular with the club’s fans.
They said in a statement: “We would like to start by thanking Sam Allardyce for his valuable work since arriving at the Boleyn Ground four years ago.
“He leaves the club in a considerably better state then when he arrived and, for that, the board are truly grateful.
“However, we have made the decision not to renew his contract, so we now have the chance to appoint a new manager with a new philosophy to lead us into two of the most exciting years in our great club’s history.
“Our target is to recruit a manager that will build a team capable of saying a fitting farewell to the Boleyn Ground next year and do justice to the outstanding surrounds we will call home from August 2016 (when the club move to the Olympic Stadium in east London).
“We have already been impressed with the quality of candidates that have expressed an interest in the role and fully expect to appoint a manager with the credentials to take this club on to new heights.”
Allardyce will now take several months away from the game and admitted he is unlikely be back in harness in time for the new season.
He said: “It’s not just a job I’m after, it’s he right job if it comes along. I certainly won’t be doing that in the next few weeks.
“You can never say never, but I can’t see myself in charge of another football club for the start of next season.”