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Chelsea stalwart Clarke to assist Zola at West Ham

SoccerNews in English Premier League 15 Sep 2008

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West Ham United appointed Steve Clarke as their first-team coach, working under new manager Gianfranco Zola, on Monday after agreeing a compensation deal with London rivals Chelsea.

Clarke, like Zola a former Chelsea player, submitted his resignation to officials at Stamford Bridge on Friday but initially the management of the west London side refused to release him.

The Blues reportedly asked for as much as five million pounds in compensation but the two Premier League clubs are now understood to have settled on a lower figure.

Clarke spent 11 years as a player at Stamford Bridge from 1987 and returned to the club as a youth team coach following a short spell as Newcastle's assistant manager.

He was promoted to assistant manager under Jose Mourinho following the Portuguese's arrival in 2004 and worked under both Avram Grant and current manager Luiz Felipe Scolari.

West Ham chief executive Scott Duxbury said: “We are very pleased to welcome Steve Clarke to the club.

“Steve is rightly regarded as one of the top coaches in Europe and his experience and knowledge will be a huge asset to us.”

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