Graeme Souness has laid into Kurt Zouma and West Ham over their conduct during the defender’s recent controversy.
Zouma has been widely condemned after a video emerged of him dropping, kicking and slapping his pet cat recently.
The French centre-half was fined the maximum amount and is under investigation by the RSPCA, who have taken his two cats into care.
While some have called for Zouma to be sacked – leading to West Ham players reportedly feeling the reaction has been over the top – David Moyes has continued to consider him for selection.
Zouma featured in the 1-0 win over Watford in midweek and had been picked to face Leicester on Sunday before pulling out in the warm-up.
Sky Sports pundit Souness raged at both the club and the player for their actions.
“I have zero sympathy for him,” Souness said.
“He’s turned up today and got abuse from his own supporters. West Ham’s roots are in the East end of London, salt of the earth people. People that would not, the vast majority would not be accepting of it.
“I have major problems with it, for me looking at that video, that cat hadn’t done anything wrong. It was picked up and abused for entertainment. They’re laughing.
“The fact they put it out on social media suggests they didn’t think there was anything wrong with the behaviour, they thought people would find this funny and amusing. It’s just wrong on every level, what they did.”
Graeme Souness says he has 'zero sympathy' for Kurt Zouma after the West Ham defender was filmed kicking his cat. pic.twitter.com/yUpggVtSWg
— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) February 13, 2022
Souness then turned his attention to West Ham as a whole after Jamie Carragher added that “everything Graeme said there is right”.
Carragher went on to ask: “The question back for Graeme is that he’s been a manager, he’s been in David Moyes’ position… maybe not something like this. But you’ve had players who have done things that are completely out of order. How do you deal with it?”
Souness replied: “I think they’ve mismanaged it from day one. For me, I wouldn’t have played him again this year. I think, if I was still a player, I wouldn’t want to be in the dressing room with him.
“I wouldn’t want him around the place until he showed real remorse in whatever way that shows itself. The statements mean nothing, fines mean nothing in this instance.”
Zouma complained of feeling unwell minutes before kick-off at the King Power Stadium, engaging in deep conversation with the physios before heading down the tunnel as the rest of the starting XI continued to warm up.
Reports suggest that he had issues with his vision and felt unwell, with Issa Diop taking his place in the line-up.