|Full name||Distel Zola|
|Date of birth||5 February 1989|
|Place of birth||Paris, France|
|Height||1.82 m (6 ft 0 in)|
|Playing position||Defensive midfielder|
|2010–2011||→ Laval (loan)||27||(1)|
|2012||→ Le Havre (loan)||15||(1)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 18 May 2016.
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 22 February 2011
Distel Zola (born 5 February 1989 in Paris) is a Congolese international footballer who plays for French club Châteauroux in Ligue 2. He plays as a defensive midfielder and is a former French youth international having earned caps at all levels of youth. In 2010, Zola switched international allegiance to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, his country of origin. He made his debut in May 2010 in a friendly match against Saudi Arabia.
Zola began his football career at the age of five at a local football academy in his hometown of Champigny-sur-Marne, a local southeastern Parisian suburb. After spending eight years at the club, he moved to US Alfortville. After a two-year stint in Alfortville, Zola drew interest from professional clubs Paris Saint-Germain, Auxerre, and Monaco. Zola ultimately signed with Monaco describing the club as the "most convincing" of the three.
Zola spent one season in Monaco's youth academy, and, in the 2005–06 season, appeared in two matches on the club's Championnat de France amateur team in the fourth division. The following season, he was promoted to the amateur team full-time making 15 appearances. Zola spent two more seasons playing on the amateur team and, prior to the start of the 2008–09 season, turned professional and was, subsequently, promoted to the senior team and assigned the number 29 shirt by manager Ricardo Gomes.
Zola appeared on the bench for the club's first five league matches and continued to play on the club's amateur team in the fifth division. On 25 September 2008, while playing with the amateur team, he suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee, which required five months of rehabilitation. He returned to play in February 2009, but did not make any senior team appearances. Zola later suffered an injury setback to his knee and endured significant rehabilitation for much of the 2009–10 season. On 10 August 2010, a healthy Zola was loaned out to Ligue 2 club Stade Lavallois for the entire 2010–11 season in order for the player to get some first-team playing time. On 13 August, Zola made his professional debut in a league match against Metz. He appeared as a substitute in a 1–0 victory.
Le Havre and Châteauroux
After a single game for Nancy in six months, Zola was loaned to Le Havre AC, a stay that was made permanent in the summer of 2012. In August 2014, Zola joined Châteauroux on a three-year contract.
- "Distel Zola avec la RD Congo". AS Monaco FC (in French). 19 May 2010. Retrieved 20 August 2010.
- "Distel Zola se confie en exclusivité sur Planete-ASM" (in French). Planete ASM. 16 October 2008. Retrieved 20 August 2010.
- "AS MONACO RESERVE PRO 2005/2006" (in French). Stat 2 Foot. Retrieved 20 August 2010.
- "AS MONACO RESERVE PRO 2006/2007" (in French). Stat 2 Foot. Retrieved 20 August 2010.
- "Les numéros officiels pour 2008-2009 !". AS Monaco FC (in French). 5 August 2008. Retrieved 20 August 2010.
- "Distel Zola: "Pas de barrière"". AS Monaco FC (in French). 25 February 2010. Retrieved 20 August 2010.
- "Monaco: D.Zola prêté à Laval". Mercato 365 (in French). 10 August 2010. Retrieved 20 August 2010.
- "Distel Zola, "Laval, le choix adéquat"". Laval Maville (in French). 10 August 2010. Retrieved 20 August 2010.
- "Laval v. Metz Match Report". Ligue de Football Professionnel (in French). 13 August 2010. Retrieved 20 August 2010.
- "Distel Zola va signer". AS Nancy (in French). 21 July 2011. Retrieved 22 July 2011.
- "Zola reste au Havre" (in French). Eurosport. 21 June 2012. Retrieved 21 June 2012.
- "Hountondji et Zola s'engagent" (in French). berrichonne.net. 28 August 2014. Retrieved 24 October 2014.