Zola on a high

Gianfranco Zola was only just able to draw breath on Saturday evening after seeing his side come out on top in an another sensational high-scoring encounter.

West Ham United raced into a five-goal lead within an hour but just as people were racing for the history books, Burnley scored three times to ensure another tense finish. After the 3-3 draw at Hull City last weekend, Zola joked that he was not sure his body could take much more.

Next Saturday, he has the small matter of the visit of Manchester United to contend with when perhaps he could be forgiven for wishing for a goalless draw. Zola will worry about that in the days to come but first he praised his players for their part in an eight-goal thriller that left them a win away from mid-table.

"What a game," he said. "Very good for my heart as well! It was an entertaining game. I would have preferred to have conceded two less goals than that but you can't have everything.

"Right now we are very good going forward but we just need to keep a little more of the balance when we are defending. It was three points and we have got to be happy about that."

Scott Parker continued his rich vein of form with a sensational performance in the middle of midfield alongside the recalled Radoslav Kovac. The Hammer of the Year set up Jack Collison's opener and had a huge impact at both ends of the pitch for the hosts. The performance had the assembled press pack once again championing Parker's international credentials.

"I know it is not the first time I have said that in his position he is one of the best. He has to keep playing like this and many good things will happen for him and I will support him."

Guillermo Franco was another that caught the eye for Zola's side, setting up Junior Stanislas to make it two before grabbing the goal his performance deserved just after the break with a header from a Stanislas free-kick.

"Guillermo has been outstanding and gave us balance and a lot more. Today he was outstanding. A quality player and he is getting physically better. His quality has surprised everybody and he is getting better and better."

The manager paid tribute to the work done by CEO Scott Duxbury and technical director Gianluca Nani to secure his services ahead of the likes of South American champions Estudiantes de La Plata. "They have done very well and signed him in the last minute and is proving to be a very good and positive player for us."

Carlton Cole got the Hammers third from the penalty spot and it turned out to be his last contribution as he was withdrawn at half-time. The England international had earlier been involved in a collision with Burnley goalkeeper Brian Jensen.

"We don't know yet it is too early to say. He has a problem with his knee and we have to wait to assess him. Hopefully he won't be too bad."

While it was likely the crowd that created an electric atmosphere will have gone home happy but exhausted, Zola knows his side must tighten up defensively before the visit of the champions next Saturday.

"I wouldn't like to concede goals but they all came when we were 5-0 up and we switched off a bit that was disappointing thing. We switched off too early and that was it.

"It was a moment that we were very fragile at the back. I take a lot of positives from this game. We scored another five goals and are going forward very well and that is a good point for us."

 Of a home win that made it just one defeat in six, Zola added: "We lose and it's negative, draw it's negative and win and it's negative, score five goals and its negative. We have to find a bit of both. We should be cheery as it was a great game, scored five goals and should be happy."

"Today I don't want to worry as we scored more than the opposition. I know we have to get better in that. We focus on that and will improve.

"I would like sometimes to find a positive thing. If you keep looking at everything under the microscope you will always find something wrong. I want to only see good things. We will keep working on the faults we have but it is a good time to celebrate."