Wilfried Zaha wanted to leave Crystal Palace this summer. The 26-year-old handed in a transfer request at Selhurst Park following interest from Arsenal and Everton. However, a move never came to fruition and Zaha is set to spend the season with the Eagles.
However, come January or next summer, speculation about Zaha’s future is sure to be rife again. He may be a vital part of Roy Hodgson’s squad but the attacker will want to test himself at a higher level and deserves the chance.
Crystal Palace owner and chairman Steve Parish accepts that it will become increasingly difficult to keep the Ivory Coast international at the south London club. As quoted by the Daily Mail, Parish said, “we’re lucky to have him. But if that top club comes along and the money’s right, he’s an extraordinary talent and it’s going to be very difficult for us…We have to make a plan for the evolution of our squad. Wilfried won’t be here forever, and we must be ready for him to go, if he does go”.
Zaha certainly has the capacity to feature at a higher level. He will be desperate to prove his quality in European competition, and to make up for his failed stint at Manchester United as a youngster.
All Crystal Palace can really hope to do is get as much money for Zaha as possible. They were able to get £50 million for Aaron Wan-Bissaka this summer and would want even more than that for Zaha.
However, even if they are able to take a huge fee, fully replacing Zaha is essentially an impossible job for a club of Crystal Palace’s stature.