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May 28, 2013

Zola vows to stay with Watford

Manager Gianfranco Zola has vowed to stay at Watford and build a better team after suffering the heartbreak of defeat in the Championship play-off final to Crystal Palace.

• Jolly at Wembley
• Lomas at Wembley
• Holloway hails Palace

Former Watford striker Kevin Phillips scored the only goal as Palace secured the final place in next season's Premier League.

Watford had missed out on automatic promotion on the final day of the season before again being denied by Ian Holloway's Palace.

But Zola insisted it had been an excellent year and committed his future to the Championship club.

"I enjoy what I am doing here," he said. "This game doesn't take anything away from our season, it has been a very good season.

"This is not the end of the road for us. This is just the beginning. It has been a big bonus to play this game. We are going to be stronger next year."

Watford named seven loan players in their starting XI at Wembley and brought a further two off the bench, but Zola admits he is not sure how many will be at Vicarage Road next season.

"It is very difficult [to say]," he added. "We are going to analyse the team. We didn't do any planning as we didn't know where we would be next year. But we are all much more prepared about what we have to face.

"Many players came in and we didn't know whether they would be able to adapt to the new challenge. Now we know and we have a very good platform to start from."

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