Zola promises strong side for 'heated' Millwall tie

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The Independent Football

The West Ham manager Gianfranco Zola insists he cannot afford to rest players for tonight's Carling Cup match against local rivals Millwall while the club works on targeting signings.

Zola's only available senior frontline striker is Carlton Cole, with technical director Gianluca Nani and chief executive Scott Duxbury looking to add at least one more forward before the transfer window closes.

Bordeaux's Marouane Chamakh has "rejected" a move to Upton Park but the deal is still being worked on, while Lazio's Goran Pandev and Livorno's Alessandro Diamanti have been linked with the Hammers

For now, Zola is short on numbers ahead of what he expects to be a hostile atmosphere when they face Millwall at Upton Park. "If I rest players, I've got nobody to play with," he said. "I don't think we're in a position where we can rest many players. We will try to present a team that can do the job."

A heavy police presence is anticipated for the second-round tie between the bitter rivals. "I don't have a background in the match, but they tell me it's a game that they have suggested I don't come to by walking to the stadium," Zola joked. "It's going to be, obviously, a very heated game. We are ready, we are professional, we care about the competition and we'll try to do our best."