Former Premier League goalkeeper Chris Kirkland says Kurt Zouma should be sacked by West Ham after sickening footage emerged of him kicking and punching a cat.
In a video obtained by The Sun, Zouma's brother, Yoan, is believed to have filmed the French centre-back abusing the animal inside his £2 million mansion. The footage was then posted to Snapchat.
One disgusting clip shows Kurt Zouma picking up the cat in his kitchen before dropping it and kicking it across the floor. Another shows the former Chelsea player slapping it in the face.
The 27-year-old has since claimed he is "deeply sorry" for his actions. In a statement sent to Sky News, he said: "I want to apologise for my actions. There are no excuses for my behaviour, which I sincerely regret.
"I also want to say how deeply sorry I am to anyone who was upset by the video. I would like to assure everyone that our two cats are perfectly fine and healthy.
"They are loved and cherished by our entire family, and this behaviour was an isolated incident that will not happen again."
West Ham have "unreservedly condemned" Kurt Zouma for kicking his cat. He can't represent them on the field atm; for how long is up to Moyes and the board to decide. He also needs to undergo an education programme with the RSPCA. And that poor cat housed with somebody who cares.— Henry Winter (@henrywinter) February 8, 2022
Many have slammed Zouma's horrific actions since the footage emerged, including former Liverpool, Wigan and Sheffield Wednesday goalkeeper Kirkland, who decided to express his anger on radio station talkSPORT.
You can see the footage below.
“Kurt Zouma has got to be sacked.”— talkSPORT (@talkSPORT) February 8, 2022
“If I was West Ham captain I’d want to get Zouma out of the dressing room.”
“I wouldn’t want to play with Zouma again, seeing that has sickened me.”
Chris Kirkland says #WHUFC cannot allow Zouma to continue to play for them. pic.twitter.com/z3HLQVNxFQ
talkSPORT host Simon Jordan labelled Zouma's behaviour as "ridiculous, puerile and cruel."
“You can’t say this does reputational damage to West Ham and footballers per se," he said. "You have to look at how West Ham handle the situation to determine whether this does reputational damage to West Ham or not.
“This is the most absurd, ridiculous, puerile, cruel behaviour. The fact that it’s been filmed and put out on social media, even in the deepest darkest recesses of a stupid brainless mind would you think that’s something that you’d want to do.
“The bottom line is he probably shouldn’t play tonight… he’s remorseful because he’s been caught. Well he hasn’t actually been caught, his brother has posted it.
“He’s a stupid young man who’s behaved in a stupid, unkind fashion and he will have to suffer the consequences of it.”
“It’s the most ridiculous, cruel and unkind set of behaviours.”— talkSPORT (@talkSPORT) February 8, 2022
“But we have to be able to live in a redemptive society.”
“Is it a sackable offence? If you want to then you'd have good grounds to do so.”
Simon Jordan looks at how #WHUFC should react to the Kurt Zouma video. pic.twitter.com/SGjQPHdohB
Jordan continued: “We must be able to live in a redemptive society. We must be able to live in a world where someone looks at themselves and goes ‘what the hell was I thinking?’
“Is it a sackable offence? If you want to turn it into gross misconduct and bringing the club into disrepute and ultimately damaging the reputation of the club – which contractually you’re now allowed to do – then if you wanted to make it a sacking offence then you’d have good grounds to do so.
“If you want to get into the nuts and bolts of what this player was thinking, why he’d do such a thing and if there’s anything in there to give you some cause to think there’s prevention and a bit of redemption in there and a bit of PR management to get the situation under control, then I think most owners would look at it from that point of view.”
The Met Police have decided not to investigate the disturbing video which showed West Ham defender Kurt Zouma kicking his cat across his kitchen floor. https://t.co/H2nUGh1O3x— SPORTbible (@sportbible) February 8, 2022
The RSPCA have also released the following statement. “This is a very upsetting video. It’s never acceptable to kick, hit or slap an animal, for punishment or otherwise.
“We are so grateful to people who report suspected animal suffering to us and we would like to reassure people we will always look into and, if necessary, investigate any complaints made to us about animal welfare.”
Featured Image Credit: Alamy/talkSPORT
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