Joint-chairman David Gold has called on West Ham fans to unite behind the team when Stoke come to Upton Park on Saturday - in a match which could seal the fate of under-pressure Gianfranco Zola.
Following Tuesday night's 3-1 home defeat to fellow relegation-battlers Wolves the Irons remain deep in trouble, just three points above the drop-zone. Fans called for Zola's dismissal during the match, while chants of "you're not fit to wear the shirt" also rang out around the Boleyn Ground and afterwards striker Carlton Cole was involved in an altercation with one such disgruntled supporter.
"Every West Ham fan will be saying 'who can we blame?' They start off blaming the players, then the manager and finally the owners. It is just the way of things," Gold said on talkSPORT.
"The fans are entitled to be disgruntled when their team are beaten 3-1 at home, but they know they need to bounce back and support their team in its hour of need.
"On Saturday we have a huge game [against Stoke] and we cannot carry that negativity into that game.
"I am feeling sorry for myself and I bet there are thousands of fans who feel sorry for themselves - and that is okay.
"However, come Saturday morning, I will be back up for it and will be in the dressing room, rooting for the guys, supporting and encouraging them. That is what we do."
Gold continued: "We are in real difficulties right now, but it is okay. What we have to do is brush ourselves down, then we have to bounce back and say 'now we have seven huge, huge games and we have to pull ourselves out of it.'
"I would say that we still have a marginal edge over our competitors, but yes, I think we will stay up."
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