Bellamy exit will not derail season, says Zola

PUBLISHED: 12:10 22 January 2009 | UPDATED: 13:59 05 October 2010

Gianfranco Zola insists West Ham are strong enough to overcome the loss of Craig Bellamy after the wantaway striker finally completed his £14m switch to Manchester City


Gianfranco Zola insists that West Ham are strong enough to overcome the loss of Craig Bellamy after the wantaway striker finally completed his £14m switch to Manchester City.

Bellamy was left out of the squad for last weekend's 3-1 win over Fulham after telling Hammers boss Zola that he wanted to leave the club following a series of enquiries from mega-rich City and rivals Spurs.

West Ham had knocked back six separate bids for the 29-year-old before agreeing a £14m deal with City on Monday as Bellamy quit the club just two years after moving to Upton Park in a £7.5m move from Liverpool.

Zola had attempted to convince the Wales international to remain with the Hammers until the summer.

But after failing to persuade Bellamy to stay, the Italian was adamant that the striker's departure would not disrupt his team's climb up the Premier League table.

"What we're doing here is achieving results - not because of one player or two players, but because we are a team," said Zola.

"We are thinking, acting and playing as a team and that won't change. The players have shown this and they are determined to be successful with whatever we've got. The whole team look very, very comfortable on the pitch. They are playing as a team and there's always an individual or two that changes the game."

David Di Michele replaced Bellamy in the starting line-up against Fulham and netted West Ham's opening goal following a howler from former Hammer John Pantsil.

But it was Carlton Cole who most impressed in Bellamy's absence, winning the penalty from which Mark Noble gave the home side a second-half lead and later bagging his fifth goal in as many games to wrap up the victory.

The in-form target man dominated Arsenal target Brede Hangeland in front of the watching England manager Fabio Capello and Zola later heaped praise on Cole for the latest in a series of top displays.

He said: "In the last four or five games he's made a difference. I'm pleased for him because every training session we are working out new ways to improve him and his attitude is excellent. That is what is making the difference.

If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the East London Advertiser. Click the link in the yellow box below for details.

Latest East London Sports News

Saturday, May 23, 2020

England Boxing is set to launch a series of free 30-minute online mental health awareness sessions called ‘Box In Mind Bitesize’.

Saturday, May 23, 2020

Alan Martin contacted the sports desk with memories of when Leyton Orient met Arsenal in 1952.

Friday, May 22, 2020

With live sport remaining on hold during the ongoing coronavirus shutdown, why not put your sporting general knowledge to the test?

Friday, May 22, 2020

The Government must underwrite a new body to protect clubs in the English Football League from going under in the coronavirus pandemic, a new report says.

Thursday, May 21, 2020

The Football Association remains committed to completing the final three rounds of the FA Cup if the professional game can safely restart amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Relegation across all three divisions of the EFL is “integral” to the integrity of the competition, the league’s board has said.

Thursday, May 21, 2020

It was eight years ago this week that West Ham booked their return to the Premier League with a play-off final win over Blackpool at Wembley.

Thursday, May 21, 2020

With sport still shut down across most of the globe due to the coronavirus pandemic, why not test your sporting knowledge with another quiz?


The Government has announced an unprecedented package of support to protect jobs and support business across the UK during the coronavirus outbreak.

People working for a wide range of private companies have been standing side-by-side with public sector staff on the front line during the coronavirus outbreak.

The United Kingdom is pulling together as one, with people from all regions and all four nations of the country helping each other through the coronavirus pandemic.

Most read sport


A competition for wannabe writers has been started to add works to Canary Wharf’s ‘short story’ dispensers which are temporarily locked up by the lock down.

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Docklands and East London Advertiser
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now

Most Read

Latest from the East London Advertiser