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Zola thanks West Ham for giving him time

Gianfranco Zola has publicly thanked West Ham for giving him the time to cut his managerial teeth in the week that Luiz Felipe Scolari and Tony Adams were sacked by Chelsea and Portsmouth respectively.

The former Chelsea and Italy legend had been linked with the vacant managerial position at Stamford Bridge before the arrival of Guus Hiddink, but he insists that he wants to stay at Upton Park for the long haul.

Zola struggled at the beginning of his Hammers career but the team have managed to turn things around with striker Carlton Cole making his senior England debut last night following a good run of form.

But Zola told reporters how lucky he is to have been given time to make his mark by the West Ham board: "A manager cannot do a job that easily in football.You need to plan and work, you need to be allowed time to change players and shape of team. It took me a long time and maybe I would have been sacked at a different club after two months, so you definitely need time."

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