West Ham United have today terminated their contract with 43 year old Italian manager Gianfranco Zola, after the club finished the Barclays Premier League in 17th place on Sunday.
The club’s board of directors issued the following statement:
“West Ham United confirm that they have terminated the contract of Gianfranco Zola.
The board of directors would like to thank him for his contribution and wish him well for the future.
The club will now be focusing its efforts on seeking a replacement.”
Zola has yet to prove himself as effective a manager as he was a player in the Premier League, where his skills for Chelsea saw him lift the FWA Player of the Year Award in 1997 after just one year in Britain.
However, the manager has had a difficult job at West Ham, who have been shedding players in recent years, most recently, he had to contend with one of the club’s joint owners, David Sullivan, issuing a statement to the effect that the entire squad, Scott Parker aside, was for sale, which surely did not resonate particularly favourably in his dressing room.
His position as manager untenable, Zola considered his options in March before deciding to see out the season, and save the club from relegation. This achieved, Zola has now been pushed from his position.
The Italian manager must hope that he meets with a more favourable board in his next appointment if he is to resurrect his fledgling managerial career.