Whilst it looks certain that Wilfried Zaha will still be a Crystal Palace player when the transfer window closes at the end of January, Steve Parish’s recent comments, where he hinted at a possible summer move for the winger, should come as a great concern for Eagles fans.
In a recent interview, the Palace chairman said:
“We have got a long history with Wilf. He loves the club and we love him. But of course, people want to do well in their career over time. We have to look at it. We have to look at the right circumstances for Wilf, the right circumstances for the club.”
There were rumours that Zaha pushed for a transfer last summer as Manchester City and Tottenham were both reportedly keen to sign him, but Palace resisted and managed to keep hold of their star player.
Earlier this month, Palace rejected an offer of over £40m from a Chinese Super League club for Zaha, but if one of Europe’s top sides come knocking with such an offer, they may find it tough to convince Zaha to stay.
Parish’s comments have been seen by many as the first attempts to smooth over any backlash that might come with a summer sale as by putting an early message out, he’s almost greasing the wheels for an end of season exit so that supporters aren’t taken by surprise.
The sad reality is, that at present, Palace can’t offer Zaha what some of those interested parties can, in terms of Champions League football and a genuine chance to win the Premier League title and it would be no surprise if he’s fed up of being in relegation battles.
The likes of City and Spurs go into most games as favourites to win, whereas Palace, as those punters who use sites such as bethard to assess football odds will know, are often underdogs. With that being the case it would be little surprise to see Zaha, as an international winger entering his peak years, want to move on.
Zaha is reportedly earning a very good wage at Palace but all top players want to win trophies as well as earn a lot of money and unless Palace significantly invest in their squad this summer, it looks like the Ivorian will be pushing for a summer transfer.