Parker happy to be a Hammer

07 February 2009 12:00
Coveted midfielder Scott Parker insists he is happy with West Ham and does not want to move away.

The 28-year-old was linked with a switch away from Upton Park in the January transfer window after West Ham owner Bjorgolfur Gudmundsson was hit by the credit crunch.

Despite Manchester City's interest, Parker was pleased to hear West Ham wanted to keep him and boss Gianfranco Zola shared the same vision for the club, which was all he needed to know to stay.

He told the Daily Telegraph: "As soon as I was put in the picture about things here - because you hear the club need to sell - it was fine.

"City is obviously a big club that's going places but I'm happy here. As long as West Ham were stable and the manager's views were the same as mine then it was okay."

Team-mate Craig Bellamy jumped ship though when City came calling but Parker - while acknowledging it was a blow to the side - defended his former colleague.

"Yeah, that was a severe loss," he said. "It's different circumstances as well. I'm sure Craig's were different to mine.

Big opportunity"I know people say there's no loyalty in football but that's just the way it is. It was a big opportunity for Craig and he felt he had to go. We just have to get on with it now."

The Hammers are up to eighth in the table on the back of a six-match unbeaten run in the league but face a tough task against Manchester United at Upton Park on Sunday - in a game being shown live on Sky Sports 1 at 4pm.

"It's obviously a tough game this weekend but you look at our fixtures after that and they're winnable," Parker said.

"The way we're playing, the way we're organised, I think we can stay in the top half, maybe get in the top eight. That would be good for a season when the manager arrived after the start."

Parker has played under Jose Mourinho at Chelsea and sees similarities with new boss Zola.

"Mourinho is the sort who draws a line that you know not to cross. It's the same here with Franco," he said.

"There's definitely an edge there that you don't mess with. At the same time, he gains respect from the players through how he was as a player and how he is as a person.

Good knack"He's never going to be one for throwing tea cups around but when he speaks, you listen. As a manager, that's a good knack to have."

Parker knows things can change quickly in football, after his time at Chelsea was hindered by a metatarsal break and then he was sold by Sam Allardyce at Newcastle.

He reflects: "Chelsea didn't work out. The injury killed me in the end, just when I was starting to turn the corner, getting a little run in the side.

"I went to Newcastle and, contrary to what people say about not settling in the North East, me and my family absolutely loved it up there.

"Then a new manager comes in and sells me."

Source: SKY_Sports