Carlton Cole fires West Ham relegation warning
Carlton Cole has warned West Ham to cut out their costly blunders or risk sliding further into a relegation crisis
By JONATHAN CLEGG
Carlton Cole has warned West Ham to cut out their costly blunders or risk sliding further into a relegation crisis.
The Hammers have slumped to 19th place in the Premier League after failing to win since the opening day of the season and passed up a golden opportunity to record a first home win against 10-man Fulham this week.
Glaring errors by England duo Matthew Upson and Robert Green saw Fulham recover from a half-time deficit and only a stoppage-time strike from Junior Stanislas salvaged a 2-2 draw after another dismal display at the Boleyn Ground.
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With five points from seven games this season, the club have equalled their worst ever start to a campaign and look set for a long battle against the drop.
But striker Cole, who netted his fourth goal of the season on Sunday, insists the Hammers can mount a recovery if they eliminate their individual errors.
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He said: "There is no panic, we know how to get ourselves out of the situation we are in. We have to cut out the mistakes.
"That is what we will be working on - we will look at all the videos of the [Fulham] game, see where we did go wrong and look to improve from that.
"As a team, we are getting there. We maybe a bit naive at the moment but we are working to improve on everything and not make the same mistakes."
The in-form forward is desperate to turn things around for under-pressure boss Gianfranco Zola, who Cole credits with his transformation from an inconsistent hopeful into an international striker.
Zola has been linked with a summer move to Napoli after the Italian side offered him an escape route to Serie A this week in a double approach for the Hammers boss and technical director Gianluca Nani.
But Cole is determined to reverse the club's slide and persuade Zola that he can fulfil his ambitions at Upton Park.
Cole said "[Zola] has been brilliant for me. He knows me well from me playing with him at Chelsea and [West Ham assistant boss] Steve Clarke was my youth-team manager at Chelsea and helped me to push me up to the first team.
"I owe a lot to those guys and need to keep on going.