Only four weeks ago, Zola left Upton Park considering his future in the job after West Ham had lost to Stoke, their sixth straight defeat.
Zola said he was persuaded not to leave by the fighting spirit of his players and he believes that togetherness is key to their turnaround.
"It was never my intention to leave this place in the situation we were in. Everybody was down and in those moments, feeling the players behind me and their fighting spirit helped," he said.
"I understand the fans were nervous like us and the way we started the game did not help, but they have been behind us and while we have not given them much satisfaction they have always been behind us and I'm grateful for that.
"[The players' reaction to the goal] was very gratifying. It shows that despite all the problems, there has been a compactness between players and staff.
"There has been a lot of stick but we have been together and that is the result, that was the meaning of the celebration."