Wilfried Zaha continues to assert his importance to Crystal Palace
The arrival of Roy Hodgson at Selhurst Park seems to have had an impact on one man in particular.
Although the former England manager did not ignite a turn in Crystal Palace’s fortunes immediately, the Eagles have certainly improved significantly in the past month.
It is just one loss in eight Premier League games now for the Eagles, and Wilfried Zaha’s performances have been a fundamental factor in this run.
The number-11’s talent has never been in question, more so the consistency of his performances.
In seasons gone by it seems like you hear of something remarkable Zaha has done every month or so, which leaves you pondering his contributions in other weeks.
This season, though, he looks the catalyst for Palace. He has been the one who to stand up to the challenge when his team have needed him the most.
It is easy for a player like Zaha, renowned for his flair, to shrug his shoulders when the going gets tough, but he has been seen doing the exact opposite this season.
The Ivorian international has scored some hugely important goals for Hodgson’s side, who found themselves at the foot of the table for a number of weeks.
His goal against Chelsea, which proved to be the winner in the shock victory, appears to be one that has turned their season around. It may well be a result they look back on in May.
He followed this strike up with a 97th minute equaliser against West Ham, which only served up more joy and relief for the Palace fans.
Zaha then found the net in another important point against Everton, before scoring in the Eagles’ superb 0-3 victory at Leicester last time out.
This showcased all his talents and is perhaps the type of goal everyone has been expecting him to score week-in week-out.
Zaha burst forward, before selling the Leicester defence with a lovely dummy, and firing a rocket into the bottom corner that no goalkeeper on the planet could have saved.
When the winger performs how he has been as of late you cannot help but think he wouldn’t look out of place at a top club – an Arsenal or Tottenham most realistically.
If Roy Hodgson can keep the performance levels at the heights they are at for Zaha currently, you would imagine the London outfit will be clear of the drop zone come the end of the season.
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