Hard work on agenda

Gianfranco Zola plans to work hard on the training pitch this week following Saturday's 1-0 Barclays Premier League defeat at Wigan Athletic.

The West Ham United manager was in philosophical mood after watching Colombian striker Hugo Rodallega score the only goal of the game at the DW Stadium. Zola was disappointed with the manner of Rodallega's strike, which came about after Robert Green had done brilliantly to keep out Jason Koumas's initial shot.


The manager, who reached his first anniversary of his unveiling at the Boleyn Ground on Friday, has said his team will  look to put things right at Chadwell Heath ahead of next Saturday's visit of Liverpool to the Boleyn Ground.

"After the first half I thought we were going to get more than a draw because of the way we were playing. But this was not the first time that we didn't start the second half at the same level as the first and we have to find out why during the week. This is something we have to work on.

"I think it was a scrappy goal that we conceded and maybe we should have done better. We will have a look during the week. I am expecting the team to play a little bit better than they did today.

"Robert Green did a great save. The first one was brilliant. To be honest, I haven't seen the moments after the rebound, but in those moments you have to be very active, so I was expecting the others to be more reactive. I will say I will be more precise when I see it."

Zola handed a senior debut to Zavon Hines after the Jamaican striker impressed in scoring a midweek reserve-team hat-trick against Birmingham City as well as the Carling Cup win over Millwall.

The manager was pleased with the impact made by the 20-year-old, who was denied a convincing penalty claim when he appeared to be brought down by Maynor Figueroa during the first half.

"He did very well. The boy was alive and he's played a very good match. I was very pleased with him.

"Some tell me that he was touched and some say not. I haven't seen it so I can't be precise, but I can say that he had gone past his defender so there was no reason for him to go down."

Another player to impress the manager was his compatriot Alessandro Diamanti, who came off the bench before twice going close to scoring a spectacular equaliser.

First, the new arrival from AS Livorno Calcio curled a trademark free-kick inches wide of Chris Kirkland's goal, then, the 26-year-old saw a vicious left-foot shot come back off the post.

"He went very close, first with the free-kick and then with a shot. Diamanti has got quality and he will be a good asset for us. He just needs some time to get used to the pace of the Premier League, which is very much different from the one in Italy. He has got qualities but important qualities.

"I was tempted to start with him but I thought he would have a better impact coming on from the bench, so he could have a look at what he was going to face. It nearly went okay."