Kurt Zouma

Zouma cat abuse: West Ham defender still needs punishment despite being 'remorseful', says Ferdinand

3:02 PM GMT 19/02/2022
Kurt Zouma West Ham 2021-22
The defender has continued to turn out for the Hammers despite the shocking incident

Kurt Zouma is remorseful for over a viral video that showed him abusing his pet cat, but the West Ham defender still deserves to be punished, says Rio Ferdinand.

The shocking video, which showed Zouma slapping and kicking the animal, has sparked outrage since it emerged before West Ham's game at Watford earlier this month.

The Hammers have condemned the Frenchman’s actions and launched an investigation, though their continued selection of the 27-year-old has itself drawn criticism.

What was said?

Speaking to BT Sport about the incident, former Hammers defender Ferdinand said: “Firstly, I think Kurt Zouma is remorseful, which is important when you make this big play with the situation.

“I think West Ham, with hindsight, they didn't expect the uproar but they would look back and think ‘maybe we should have taken him out of the firing line against Watford’. What has happened since then, they have been scrutinised.

“He needs punishment. The [animal charity] RSPCA are now investigating the case. I think a punishment will come and he will think 'I need to take that punishment that comes my way'."

Ferdinand also praised West Ham skipper Mark Noble for confronting the issue with the rest of the squad to ensure there was no lingering animosity that could damage morale.

“We hear that Mark Noble has called a captains' meeting as well. You need to know where your squad are at and it's good to find out who's not happy,” added Ferdinand.

“Don't forget West Ham are in a position to get into Europe and the Champions League even.

“They need to be mindful without glossing over the issue. I think Mark Noble as done an admirable job in that.”

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