However, Al-Arabi failed to make much progress under his stewardship, finishing in the same position (eighth) and with the same number of points (35) in the 14-team league as the previous season.
“Our president has said he is going to change the coach,” confirmed a spokesman for Al-Arabi.
Zola has be replaced by veteran Uruguayan coach Gerardo Pelusso after the club installed a new president, Sheikh Khalifa bin Jabr Al-Thani.
Earlier this month, Zola was odds-on favourite with the bookies to be named next Nottingham Forest manager, with his odds, at one stage, being slashed from 20-1 to 1-4. However, Nottingham Forest have since appointed Philippe Montanier as head coach on a two-year contract. The question remains whether Zola will make a return to English football in some management position.