Monday, September 24, 2018

Wilfried Zaha happy at Crystal Palace

David Nugent in Editorial, English Premier League 14 May 2018

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Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha could be one of the most in-demand Premier League players this summer, as reportedly Manchester City, Chelsea and Tottenham are all eying a move for the Ivory Coast international.

However, it seems he may be set to disappoint his potential suitors by staying with the Eagles for next season. Sky Sports quote Zaha as saying: “I have no plans on leaving,”

“I’m enjoying my football, you can see how much I’m enjoying it. This is my home and there’s no reason for me to leave.”

Is maturing into a fine player

Wilfried Zaha has always been one of those frustrating players who have big talent but can never seem to find consistency. However, despite injury problems, Zaha has found a new level of consistency in the past few seasons.

This season Zaha has scored nine Premier League goals and produced seven assists. That tally is quite impressive considering he missed nine top-flight games due to injury. It was also a reasonable figure for a player in a struggling side.

Zaha is the sort of player who is always dangerous to opposition defences, whether he is deployed out wide or as a central striker. He is a handful for any defence. It is not surprising that more high-profile clubs want Zaha. I would argue that the former Manchester United man is the most talented player at any club outside the top-six of the Premier League.

Maybe has learned that the grass is not always greener

Wilfried Zaha has made a big money move to a high-profile club before, enjoying a short ill-fated spell at Manchester United from 2013-15, in which time he had two loan spells back at Palace and also a temporary stay at Cardiff.

When the winger made the move to United, he was just too young and it was evident that he really was not ready for such a high-profile move. He struggled for game time and seemed to lose confidence.

The then youngster had shown tremendous ability and potential prior to the move to Old Trafford. However, it just did not happen for him in Manchester. His struggle for form led to those aforementioned loan spells, where he also did not hit top form.

It is only since he returned to Palace in 2015 that Zaha has started to fulfil his potential. At 25 years old, he is at the peak of his powers and looks like he can get even better in the near future.

Zaha is in a far better place now in his career, which is courtesy of regular first-team football at Palace. He is the main man for the Eagles, a hero with the clubs fans. If he moved on, he is unlikely to receive the same sort of adulation elsewhere. He may not even be first choice at a City or another top-four club, despite his obvious ability.

An allegiance switch means no World Cup this summer

A switch of international allegiances from England to Ivory Coast 2017 means that the winger will miss out on this summer’s World Cup in Russia, as his national team failed to qualify for World Cup 2018.

In truth, the Three Lions could have done with Zaha in their squad this summer. Gareth Southgate is not exactly blessed with the best choice of players for the big event, which is why England’s odds of 18/1 to win the World Cup look generous.

The way that Zaha finished the season it is a shame he will not be pulling on a white shirt this summer. However, it could be a blessing in disguise for the player. It spares him the indignity that every England team receives when they inevitably tank at a major tournament.

The winger will now have time free this summer to recharge his batteries ahead of next season. It sounds like, despite the speculation over a big money move this summer, he could be starring for the Eagles once again next season.

Will Wilfried Zaha be a Crystal Palace player next season?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

David Nugent


David is a freelance football writer with nearly a decade of experience writing about the beautiful game. The experienced writer has written for over a dozen websites and also an international soccer magazine offline.
Arguably his best work has come as an editorial writer for Soccernews, sharing his good, bad and ugly opinions on the world’s favourite sport. During David’s writing career he has written editorials, betting previews, match previews, banter, news and opinion pieces.

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