West Ham set to unveil Zola

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The Independent Online

Gianfranco Zola is expected to be named as West Ham's new manager today but Pierluigi Casiraghi insists he will not be following his fellow ex-Chelsea player to Upton Park.

Zola and Casiraghi are joint coaches of the Italy Under-21 side and the 42-year-old has emerged as the Hammers' first choice to succeed Alan Curbishley.

Casiraghi has been linked with a move to London as well but, speaking after Italy under-21s' 1-1 draw with Croatia last night, the ex-striker said: "I'm not going to West Ham.

"I don't know what will happen, but I know I want to be at the Euros with these lads, they deserve it."

Meanwhile, John Terry has backed Zola to be a success at West Ham - and to one day become Chelsea manager.

Terry, who played with Zola for five years at Stamford Bridge, said: "He is a Chelsea legend. I'm sure one day he'll be back at Chelsea.

"He's managed the [Italy] under-21s for a while and has a bit more experience.

"It will be great for him to take the job and get more experience and hopefully get the experience to one day become Chelsea manager."

Talks between Zola and West Ham are understood to have gone well and he is expected to be presented at a press conference in London tomorrow.

The Italian's closest rival was his compatriot Roberto Donadoni, the former Italy manager, but he announced yesterday that he was withdrawing from the contest after it became clear that Zola was West Ham's first choice.

Meanwhile, Hammers technical director Gianluca Nani has confirmed they are interested in signing Ghana midfielder Stephen Appiah.

The 27-year-old is a free agent after leaving Fenerbahce and both Arsenal and Portsmouth have also expressed an interest.

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