So Sullivan says Zola is 100% safe?
Of course he is, anything else is unthinkable. Sullivan is desperate to cut costs and sacking a manager is expensive.
Zola confirmed the other day that that he is on £1.6m a year (and that he is not here for the money, which I do not doubt!). As Clarke is also in the package an additional cost of £1m is attached to the Zola management. £2.6m a year – £50k a week until 2013. With that kind of money involved, can you see G&S spending what it would take to buy out Z&C?
No, but B&G does not seem to be interested in backing Zola for the rest of the contract either which leaves but one possibility - putting Zola in a situation he can’t stand. No money to keep pivotal players, no money to strengthen the squad and no influence over the replacements that comes in should probably do it.
In a way G&S and Z&C share a basic insight. For Zola’s game plan to work he needs players that are technically well equipped at a level that allows them to use their technique in a PL setting. But as that kind of players are highly regarded and sought after they are expensive, whether they come from our academy or not.
And herein lies maybe their common understanding - Zola may not be the manager to handle a squad supplied by G&S.
Will Zola leave by free will then?
Yes he will, I think, but certainly not until the summer.