KURT Zouma is set to play for West Ham tomorrow as David Moyes urges him to "move on" from his sickening cat attack scandal.
The Hammers defender pulled out of the squad last minute before the 2-2 draw with Leicester on Sunday after being struck down by a stomach bug – but is due to be available for their clash against Newcastle.
Zouma was at the centre of a tirade of backlash when The Sun exclusively revealed a clip showing the French ace kicking, slapping and throwing objects at his Bengal pet cat while at his Essex home.
Less than 24 hours later, Moyes came under fire for starting the 27-year-old for the Hammers – with the boss suggesting it was because he is one of the club’s “better players”.
But on Sunday, Zouma withdrew from the team shortly before kick off after felling unwell during the warm up.
Moyes has insisted the Premier League star is now "better" as he pressed him to "move on".
“He’s better, but it’s taken him a couple of days to get over it – he had quite bad sickness and illness, but he’s trained the last couple of days, so I’m hoping that he’ll be available," the manager said.
Asked how the player was mentally, Moyes added: “I think he’s probably really disappointed about what he’s done and he’s thinking about it a lot, no doubt, but overall we have tried to get him to move on.
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“We want him to concentrate on his training. He played very well for us against Watford the other week there, so we’re hoping that we can keep him at those levels of performance, we’ll be pleased with that.
“He’s really well-liked here amongst the supporters, the performances he’s put in throughout the season already, so hopefully he can focus on his football and we’ll give him as much support as we can until we get him right back to his best.”
Zouma returned to training this week after being replaced by fellow Frenchman Issa Diop for the Hammers' match against Leicester.
After footage of him abusing his cat emerged, Zouma was fined £250k by the club, lost several sponsors, had his cats seized and is currently under investigation by the RSPCA.
His brother Yoan, who filmed the incident before posting it on social media, has been suspended by National League side Dagenham and Redbridge.
But despite Zouma keeping the support of his club and boss, Celia Hammond – founder of the Celia Hammond Animal Trust since 1986 – told SunSport he should face the “full weight of the law”.
“Judging by the behaviour of both Zouma and his brother it seems unlikely that this was an isolated incident," she said.
“It is almost unbelievable that within 24 hours Zouma was selected to play in a match against Watford.
“This decision was a gross error of judgement by the manager and showed a complete misunderstanding of how the British public would be likely to react to these appalling scenes.
“The outrage that has followed was completely predictable.”
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