Zola makes West Ham assurances

By Jim van Wijk,Pa
Monday 09 November 2009 11:35
Zola saw West Ham's home form take another blow
Zola saw West Ham's home form take another blow

Defiant Gianfranco Zola insists he will find the solutions needed to get West Ham out of the relegation zone when the Barclays Premier League resumes.

The Hammers dropped back into the bottom three when their mini-revival was ended by Everton at Upton Park yesterday, where Louis Saha and teenager Dan Gosling secured the visitors a first win in five league games.

Zola's men never really got going until they were 2-0 down just after the hour, pulling a goal back when Everton defender Tony Hibbert put through his own net.

England Under-21 forward Zavon Hines, playing in place of the injured Carlton Cole, had netted a dramatic last-minute winner over Aston Villa on Wednesday night, but missed two good chances to draw the Irons level.

Italian playmaker Alessandro Diamanti - who had helped turn the game against Arsenal last month when West Ham recovered from 2-0 down to earn a draw - made an impact from the bench, forcing Tim Howard into a fine save from his curling free-kick.

However, despite a couple of late scrambles in the six-yard box, there was no grandstand finish.

West Ham travel to fellow strugglers Hull - who recorded a much-needed win over Stoke - when domestic action resumes on November 21.

Zola will use the international break to get to the bottom of just why his team are unable to turn their commitment into results.

"It is a big question mark for me, how can we lose a game like that," he said. "We have to analyse the problems first and find solutions.

"I felt the players gave everything. Their attitude and their commitment was very good.

"But we have to find out straight away what is not working well, because it is not doing us any favours."

The Hammers boss added: "I am not worried because I think we can certainly improve the situation.

"We are going to fight until the end. We will find the solutions and we will find them as quickly as possible. I am confident and I trust the players.

"We are determined to make things different, and that is what matters."

David Moyes, meanwhile, hailed Everton's resilience.

Saha returned to the starting XI after he missed the midweek Europa League defeat to Benfica with a calf problem, and the French striker netted from 20 yards against the run of play on 26 minutes to continue his fine scoring record against the Hammers.

There were also positive displays from 19-year-old Gosling and fellow teenager Jack Rodwell, called into action because of Everton's injury crisis.

"We have not played that well, so we cannot ask for any more," said Moyes.

"The key is always to find a winning formula, and we found one, but we need to play better than we have done.

"At the moment, we are lacking just a bit of quality.

"October was a tough month, with probably too many matches for the same group of players.

"Nevertheless, I thought they should great character to hang in there at the end of what has been a difficult period for them."

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