Zola pleased by points return

Gianfranco Zola thinks his side's 1-0 win at Sunderland on Sunday is just desserts for the team's effort in recent games.

Valon Behrami got the only goal at the Stadium of Light as West Ham United earned a second consecutive clean sheet and, more importantly, the three points that move them up to 13th in the Barclays Premier League.

Zola was certain his side's luck would eventually change after recent performances had not got the results they deserved. "Today my smile is a bit bigger because the team were playing well and not getting results," he said. "Today they got what they deserved from before. In the last five or six matches we played really well but got few points. Today it was not so pretty at times but the result was what was important. I am pleased for the boys.

"Football is strange, sometimes you play well and you get nothing and in those moments you have to keep working, keep perfecting what you are doing and sooner or later you will be rewarded for what you are doing."

The second half saw the visiting defence come under sustained pressure but a solid rearguard action - led by Matthew Upson and James Collins - ensured they left the north-east with a win. Zola said: "We know it is important to defend properly, the three points we got today proved that. But we are going to try and build the quality of the football - that is our aim and that is what we are going to be doing during the week."