Some of the leading clubs in world football have expressed an interest in signing Wilfried Zaha. Chelsea and Tottenham were credited with an interest in signing the Ivorian international back in the summer, whilst Bundesliga leaders Borussia Dortmund were strongly linked with Zaha as recently as January, but is he really that good?
Of course, barring Eden Hazard, there is probably nobody as good as Zaha at taking on and beating his man in the entirety of the Premier League. But for the price tag being thrown around by the Eagles – they are said to want upwards of £50m – his end product and numbers this season simply won’t cut it at a bigger club than Palace.
The 26-year-old’s career best in terms of goal involvements came back in 2016/17, in which he bagged seven goals and recorded nine assists. In comparison, an 18-year-old in Jadon Sancho has already bettered those figures with eight goals and 11 assists in just his second season in senior football.
That isn’t to say that Zaha is a terrible footballer. Far from it. His skills are mesmeric at times and his ability to draw a number of defenders to him opens up a lot of space for his teammates.
Having said that, he receives a free pass in the Palace team for his God-like status at Selhurst Park, in which his past feats, such as scoring a play-off semi-final brace at The Amex against arch rivals Brighton, see him cut slack that he would not be afforded at a top-six club or a Champions League side like Dortmund.
Zaha’s five goals and two assists so far this season simply isn’t good enough for a player of his ability – perhaps he has become too comfortable in south London and needs a fresh challenge.
Whatever the reason, at this present moment in time, the Palace academy graduate isn’t justifying the price tag placed on his shoulders, or the hype he constantly receives from those inside and outside the club. In a nutshell, he just isn’t all that good.