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Football: Zola Hoping To Hammer Chelsea

Posted on: December 14, 2008

LONDON : Gianfranco Zola insists there will be no split loyalties when his struggling West Ham side face his old club Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

The former Italy striker remains a Blues legend from his playing days at the Bridge and is facing his former side for the first time in his fledgling managerial career.

But the Hammers boss insists he will not be sorry if he inflicts another defeat on Chelsea as they bid to keep up with Liverpool at the top of the English Premier League.

“I will have no sympathy (for Chelsea) if we win,” the Sardinian said.

“I have a commitment to this club. I will do everything I can for this club because they had faith in me.”

“Not many people thought we were going to win in Sunderland or draw against Liverpool but that’s football. It makes it even more interesting. It’s very unpredictable. I know that the odds are against us and it’s going to be a tough match but you never know.

“It’s going to be a great game.”

Zola scored 80 goals in 312 games between 1996 and 2003 for Chelsea, winning the European Cup Winners’ Cup, the European Super Cup, two FA Cups and a League Cup in the process.

Chelsea assistant coach Ray Wilkins said he hoped Zola and his own predecessor Steve Clarke would receive a warm welcome, despite the traditional enmity between west London’s Blues and east London’s Hammers.

“The fellow is, no question about it, one of the greatest players that’s played for our club. To go with it as well, a really nice guy,” former England midfielder Wilkins said of Zola.

“He’s trying to get them to play some very attractive football and I believe they’re doing that but unfortunately for them perhaps the results haven’t gone for them as well as they would have liked.

“It would be great to see him succeed at West Ham.”

Chelsea go into Sunday’s London derby second in the table behind leaders Liverpool, while West Ham are hovering just above the relegation zone.

The Hammers are in woeful form, having won just one of their last 10 matches and having failed to score in six of their last nine games.

But Chelsea’s once imperious home form is now looking shaky.

The Blues have lost two of their last four Premier League games, having previously gone 86 top-flight matches unbeaten at Stamford Bridge.

As part of his bid to revive their home form, Chelsea manager Luiz Felipe Scolari must work out how he plans to deploy strikers Didier Drogba and Nicolas Anelka.

France hitman Anelka won the Premier League player of the month award for November for his performances, while Drogba’s season has been hampered by injury and suspension.

But the Ivory Coast forward came on from the substitutes’ bench to score the winner as Chelsea sealed a place in the last 16 of the Champions League at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday, beating Romania’s CFR Cluj 2-1.

Some have questioned whether Anelka and Drogba can play together but Scolari says he will look to find a way to make them gel together.

Chelsea have won their last seven encounters with West Ham.

In last season’s corresponding fixture in December 2007, The Blues beat the Hammers 1-0 thanks to a late goal from Upton Park old boy Joe Cole.

The east London side’s last win over the Chelsea came in May 2003 in a 1-0 win at Upton Park and their last triumph at Stamford Bridge was a 3-2 win in September 2002, with Zola among Chelsea’s goalscorers.

“I remember that game,” the Italian said.

“We always had very good matches with West Ham and hopefully the result is going to be the same.”

– AFP/vm

Channel News Asia

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Football: Zola Hoping To Hammer Chelsea

Posted on: December 14, 2008

LONDON : Gianfranco Zola insists there will be no split loyalties when his struggling West Ham side face his old club Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

The former Italy striker remains a Blues legend from his playing days at the Bridge and is facing his former side for the first time in his fledgling managerial career.

But the Hammers boss insists he will not be sorry if he inflicts another defeat on Chelsea as they bid to keep up with Liverpool at the top of the English Premier League.

“I will have no sympathy (for Chelsea) if we win,” the Sardinian said.

“I have a commitment to this club. I will do everything I can for this club because they had faith in me.”

“Not many people thought we were going to win in Sunderland or draw against Liverpool but that’s football. It makes it even more interesting. It’s very unpredictable. I know that the odds are against us and it’s going to be a tough match but you never know.

“It’s going to be a great game.”

Zola scored 80 goals in 312 games between 1996 and 2003 for Chelsea, winning the European Cup Winners’ Cup, the European Super Cup, two FA Cups and a League Cup in the process.

Chelsea assistant coach Ray Wilkins said he hoped Zola and his own predecessor Steve Clarke would receive a warm welcome, despite the traditional enmity between west London’s Blues and east London’s Hammers.

“The fellow is, no question about it, one of the greatest players that’s played for our club. To go with it as well, a really nice guy,” former England midfielder Wilkins said of Zola.

“He’s trying to get them to play some very attractive football and I believe they’re doing that but unfortunately for them perhaps the results haven’t gone for them as well as they would have liked.

“It would be great to see him succeed at West Ham.”

Chelsea go into Sunday’s London derby second in the table behind leaders Liverpool, while West Ham are hovering just above the relegation zone.

The Hammers are in woeful form, having won just one of their last 10 matches and having failed to score in six of their last nine games.

But Chelsea’s once imperious home form is now looking shaky.

The Blues have lost two of their last four Premier League games, having previously gone 86 top-flight matches unbeaten at Stamford Bridge.

As part of his bid to revive their home form, Chelsea manager Luiz Felipe Scolari must work out how he plans to deploy strikers Didier Drogba and Nicolas Anelka.

France hitman Anelka won the Premier League player of the month award for November for his performances, while Drogba’s season has been hampered by injury and suspension.

But the Ivory Coast forward came on from the substitutes’ bench to score the winner as Chelsea sealed a place in the last 16 of the Champions League at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday, beating Romania’s CFR Cluj 2-1.

Some have questioned whether Anelka and Drogba can play together but Scolari says he will look to find a way to make them gel together.

Chelsea have won their last seven encounters with West Ham.

In last season’s corresponding fixture in December 2007, The Blues beat the Hammers 1-0 thanks to a late goal from Upton Park old boy Joe Cole.

The east London side’s last win over the Chelsea came in May 2003 in a 1-0 win at Upton Park and their last triumph at Stamford Bridge was a 3-2 win in September 2002, with Zola among Chelsea’s goalscorers.

“I remember that game,” the Italian said.

“We always had very good matches with West Ham and hopefully the result is going to be the same.”

– AFP/vm

Channel News Asia

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Football: Zola Hoping To Hammer Chelsea

Posted on: December 14, 2008

LONDON : Gianfranco Zola insists there will be no split loyalties when his struggling West Ham side face his old club Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

The former Italy striker remains a Blues legend from his playing days at the Bridge and is facing his former side for the first time in his fledgling managerial career.

But the Hammers boss insists he will not be sorry if he inflicts another defeat on Chelsea as they bid to keep up with Liverpool at the top of the English Premier League.

“I will have no sympathy (for Chelsea) if we win,” the Sardinian said.

“I have a commitment to this club. I will do everything I can for this club because they had faith in me.”

“Not many people thought we were going to win in Sunderland or draw against Liverpool but that’s football. It makes it even more interesting. It’s very unpredictable. I know that the odds are against us and it’s going to be a tough match but you never know.

“It’s going to be a great game.”

Zola scored 80 goals in 312 games between 1996 and 2003 for Chelsea, winning the European Cup Winners’ Cup, the European Super Cup, two FA Cups and a League Cup in the process.

Chelsea assistant coach Ray Wilkins said he hoped Zola and his own predecessor Steve Clarke would receive a warm welcome, despite the traditional enmity between west London’s Blues and east London’s Hammers.

“The fellow is, no question about it, one of the greatest players that’s played for our club. To go with it as well, a really nice guy,” former England midfielder Wilkins said of Zola.

“He’s trying to get them to play some very attractive football and I believe they’re doing that but unfortunately for them perhaps the results haven’t gone for them as well as they would have liked.

“It would be great to see him succeed at West Ham.”

Chelsea go into Sunday’s London derby second in the table behind leaders Liverpool, while West Ham are hovering just above the relegation zone.

The Hammers are in woeful form, having won just one of their last 10 matches and having failed to score in six of their last nine games.

But Chelsea’s once imperious home form is now looking shaky.

The Blues have lost two of their last four Premier League games, having previously gone 86 top-flight matches unbeaten at Stamford Bridge.

As part of his bid to revive their home form, Chelsea manager Luiz Felipe Scolari must work out how he plans to deploy strikers Didier Drogba and Nicolas Anelka.

France hitman Anelka won the Premier League player of the month award for November for his performances, while Drogba’s season has been hampered by injury and suspension.

But the Ivory Coast forward came on from the substitutes’ bench to score the winner as Chelsea sealed a place in the last 16 of the Champions League at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday, beating Romania’s CFR Cluj 2-1.

Some have questioned whether Anelka and Drogba can play together but Scolari says he will look to find a way to make them gel together.

Chelsea have won their last seven encounters with West Ham.

In last season’s corresponding fixture in December 2007, The Blues beat the Hammers 1-0 thanks to a late goal from Upton Park old boy Joe Cole.

The east London side’s last win over the Chelsea came in May 2003 in a 1-0 win at Upton Park and their last triumph at Stamford Bridge was a 3-2 win in September 2002, with Zola among Chelsea’s goalscorers.

“I remember that game,” the Italian said.

“We always had very good matches with West Ham and hopefully the result is going to be the same.”

– AFP/vm

Channel News Asia

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