Zola disagrees with Redknapp's assessment of West Ham youngsters

West Ham boss Gianfranco Zola has told Hammers starlets they can reach the same heights as Rio Ferdinand and Frank Lampard, contrary to Harry Redknapp's recent comments.

West Ham boss Gianfranco Zola has told Hammers starlets they can reach the same heights as Rio Ferdinand and Frank Lampard, contrary to Harry Redknapp's recent comments.

The current Tottenham boss, Harry Redknapp, claimed last week that the current crop of Hammers talent is nowhere near the same calibre as the former stars.

But Zola has told the likes of Mark Noble, Freddie Sears and James Tomkins they can emulate the exploits of their predecessors.

"I believe when Rio or Lamps or Joe Cole were coming through they were just promising. Then they improved," the Italian said.

"What I said about my players is that it is just down to them. If they work hard every day and keep the right attitude they can do that.

"Maybe Harry has more experience than me and can see forward more than me. But I believe everyone owns their own destiny.

"When I started playing football there were a few that said I wouldn't become the player I was but they didn't know what my attitude and mentality was.

"I believe that if my players have the attitude they can become important players.

"If they push themselves hard and believe in what they do they will go beyond the limits that people are putting on them now."

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