West Ham musings by Pete May, author of Hammers in the Heart, West Ham:Irons in the Soul and Flying So High:West Ham's Cup Finals.
Tuesday, May 11
Gianfranco Zola has been sacked says a terse statement on the West Ham website. No word on the future of Clarke, so presumably the cheaper option for the board is to keep him on as the new man’s assistant.
It’s tough on Zola, who has behaved with dignity throughout the season despite much interference from The Club Landlord. The style of football he wanted was right for West Ham, but once Nani went his position became untenable.
Franco wants to be a coach and is unproven in the transfer market, when what we need is someone who can work the market like Roy Hodgson has and improve undervalued players.
We have underachieved with the squad we’ve got, and big errors have been made in the transfer market, such as selling Collins and not recruiting a right back. These might have been down to Nani, but we have to assume he was working in liaison with Zola and Clarke.
You have to admire Zola’s sporting behaviour and his refusal to criticize referees. The players clearly liked him and I hope he’s a success as a coach, perhaps in Italy.
But this is the chance to recruit someone with more experience and hopefully the strength of character to stand up to the owners.
The good news is that Gordon Brown has made himself available.