|The very best posts from KUMB over the years ...
I've always supported the G&S bid on the grounds of their experience and realism ... but I'm starting to wonder. If they seriously plan to get rid of Zola and install Mark Hughes, they'll be making a massive mistake.
The only two good reasons for getting rid of a manager at this stage in the season are either that he's lost the confidence of the team, who are underperforming as a result ... and that you've got someone obviously netter to step in.
The first of those conditions clearly does not apply. The fans and the players are still behind Zola. As Matt Upson himself said after the game yesterday, the team's been playing much better in the past month (Spurs away being the only big exception). There was no sign whatever in that 0-0 that this was a tram that didn't believe in what it was doing: quite the reverse, in fact. They've worked hard, defended much more solidly and held theit own against Chelsea, Villa and (for mot of the game) Arsenal. They've done this without all their main strikers. When Cole and Franco come back and the fixture list gives us that run of games against fellow strugglers, there's every reason to see a much better run that would take us racing up the table, just as Everton are now doing.
So there's no 'push' to get rid of Zola.
And there's no 'pull' for Mark Hughes. I like the man. He comes across as intelligent, dignified and worthy of respect. But he's not got a stellar management record. Not bad, certainly, but not stellar. Why disrupt the club, unsettle the players and risk the turnaround that's happening anyway, just so G&S can stamp their mark on their new toy?
And why not act like grownups and take some time to make a sensible, reasoned, informed assessment of what's happening at the club, in a way that can only be done from the inside. There's no need to panic. The odds are still strongly in favour of escaping relegation this season. So G&S should do the thing that can often be hardest for corporate management - nothing.
I would take Burt's Duxbury inspired witterings a little less seriously if I were you. If G&S do decide to get rid it'll be because we are still flirting dangerously close to relegation with a couple of months to go.
I would have thought the push was we're losing far more games than we're winning, have been in and around the relegation zone most of the season and most of the players have gone backwards under him?
Still he has had limited resources to work with, it'll be interesting to see what he can do if he's given a few quid to spend in this window. The team is crying out for more depth/quality.
Just to play devil's advocate, if a prospective owner believes that Zola isn't the man they want at the club in the long term, at what point do you replace him?
Do you give him money to spend in January? Money that could be used counter-productively to the desires of the new manager.
Do you wait til the summer and set back your long term plans six months?
If we were relegated this season, you've handed your new boss an even bigger task when he joins.
If he keeps us up in Great Escape like fashion, you risk the wrath of the fans when Zola is removed.
Would it not make sense to ring the changes as soon as possible rather than keep the club in limbo for a period of time?
If Zola is here two months after they start - he will be in 3-5 years time.
If we go down with Zola as the manager - and they hold him in reasonable regard - he will not be sacked.
It's not their style. The only hesitation I'd have is that they didn't pick Zola first up. They always back their own man. Wheteher Zola falls into "own man" category - who knows?
They've backed Fry, Bruce and McLeish after relegations - even though Bruce especially - did what the anti-G and S mob would call a "Curbishley" with his signings when they bankrolled him to take them up a level.
It's one of ths strange contradictions of this debate.
People criticise them for not handing more money to Bruce to avoid relegation, when he was spending it like Curbishley did here on players who never played.
Of the 2 men involved, as a neutral, I, like most others I imagine, had a great deal of respect for Zola as a player. Not only was he supremely talented, but played the game fairly, with excellent spirit, and the warmth of his personality shone through. A lot of that he has taken into management. Whether he has the know how to be a top manager, well, only time will tell. But in terms of personality and having a manager I actually like as a person, I feel Zola deserves a chance under the new owners, whoever they are. He is someone I really want to do well (and not just because that means West Ham will be doing well)
As for Mark Hugues, well just about the opposite, imo. Sure, there's no doubt he also was a very talented player. But he is one of my all time least favourite player. Arrogant, smug, self-righteous, superior, well, where shall I stop? Sure, he's done okay as a manager, but I don't want him here.
Whereas Zola's personality seems to fit very well with us as a club, I feel Sparky's smug arrogance is at odds with what our club is all about
I dont think there is a chance in hell that we will be relegated unless the "new owners" decide to replace Zola.I can honestly say I was very sceptical when Zola was installed but he has one me over.You can see it on the players faces and in the way they try to play - Zola has got the team to play the West Ham way and the team spirit is in evidence accross the pitch.Destroy the Spirit within the team and we are destined for the drop.
I am and always will be proud to call myself one of Frankie Zola's claret and blue army! God bless the little fella
That bit is just plain wrong.
Upson - no.
Illunga - resting on his laurels after new contract
Green - no.
Collison - the lad has had a tough 6 months.
Noble - lost after leaving the under 21's and still in need of a definite midfield role.
Hughes for me all day long. We'll do better under Hughes than Zola, and there is no reason why, with Hughes and a competent Board/owners we can't, in the medium terms be doing as well as the white shirted prima donnas from North London
I notice you have gone from talking about "most of the players have gone backwards under him" (which suggests the players have simply got worse) to now talking about "form" (which is temporary).
It'll only be temporary if the players get better again won't it? The players I've mentioned, have all IMHO got worse under Zola, Cole is the only one who for me has shown significant improvement.
If we take the word form out and say.. Green, Upson, Colllison, Ilunga, Noble look worse under Zola than they did under Curbishley what's the difference. It's obviously a little hard to do a direct comparison as other players have come and gone, injuries etc but apart from Cole I don't think anyone looks any better under Zola than they did under Curbishley, all IMHO of course.
Ok, so you are not talking about form, which is what I thought. I can't see how you can say Green and Upson have simply got worse. Neither have been on top form over the past few months, but that's it - it's about form. Green showed yesterday how good he still is (and also how is still prone to silly decisions - he always has been). Upson, except for 3/4 matches over the past few months is still an England International. Again, only his form has waivered. Under Zola Upson has been a rock for us.
On second thoughts, I think you might have a point with Noble though - Zola and Clarke like previous management teams don't seem to know what to do with him. Maybe they could have used him more wisely.
my only real concern about Zola, is his lack of experience and him clearly being out of his depth for a relegation fight but having said that I don't believe it would be right to sack him. This last year he had to manage a club under almost impossible circumstances and I do believe he has done all that he can. If we can come through this and stay up I feel the experience will of been of benefit to Zola, and we really need to wait and see how well he can really do when he has some money to spend.
Upson and Green's form has plummeted this season. Noble doesn't look like a Prem player IMO. Ilumga is nowhere near as good as last seaso, for whatever reason. Same for Collison,
Cole, Parker, Faubert, and now even Kovac look better than last season IMO though.
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