Zola can keep Hammers up - Gold

BY foxsports • March 24, 2010

West Ham co-owner David Gold believes manager Gianfranco Zola can still guide the Hammers to Premier League safety this season.

The Irons are deep in trouble just three points above the dropzone following Tuesday night's comprehensive defeat 3-1 home defeat against fellow relegation battlers Wolves - which was a fifth straight loss.

Fans chanted for Zola's dismissal during the match, and afterwards striker Carlton Cole was involved in an altercation with a disgruntled supporter.

However, Gold - who recently completed a takeover at Upton Park with long-time business partner David Sullivan - remains confident the Hammers can survive.

Gold told talkSPORT: "I had a chat with Franco after the game. Of course he is disappointed, we are all disappointed, the fans are disappointed, of course they are.

"We are in real difficulties right now. We have got some cup finals coming up now, but it is OK.

"What we have to do is brush ourselves down, then we have to bounce back and say 'now we have seven huge, huge games and we have to pull ourselves out of it."'

Gold continued: "Obviously people are going to question the manager because they are looking for someone to blame.

"Every West Ham fan will be saying 'who can we blame?' They start off blaming the players, then the manager and finally the owners. It is just the way of things.

"But on Saturday we have a huge game [against Stoke] and we cannot carry that negativity into that game.

"The fans are entitled to be disgruntled when their team are beaten 3-1 at home, but they know they need to bounce back and support their team in its hour of need.

"I would say that we still have a marginal edge over our competitors, but yes, I think we will stay up."

Zola, meanwhile, has told West Ham's furious fans to blame him and not the players for the current poor run of form after chants of 'you're not fit to wear the shirt' rang out around the Boleyn Ground.

The Italian - appointed in September 2008 following Alan Curbishley's departure - remains focused on getting the team out of trouble, rather than worrying about his own future in the Upton Park hotseat.

"The owners can do whatever they feel is the right thing to do," he said.

"I try to do my work as best as I can every single day. If that is not considered good enough, there you go."