Arsenal and Chelsea could battle for Wilfried Zaha
The 30-year-old has achieved legendary status at Selhurst Park for his outstanding contribution over the years. He is a local boy who rose through the youth ranks at the club and has carried Palace for too long.
Making his senior debut in 2009, when Palace were in the Championship, Zaha made 143 appearances before he made the move to Manchester United – a transfer switch that didn’t work out for him. He returned to his boyhood club soon after.
Since 2014, he has spent nine seasons at the club including the present campaign in the Premier League, managing 72 goals in 313 games in all competitions. There were times when it felt like Zaha would leave for a top Premier League side, but a potential deal never materialized.
The clock is now ticking as Zaha is approaching the end of his contract at Palace. The Telegraph claim that the door to a top club may still be open for Zaha, and Arsenal and Chelsea would at least match Palace’s contract offer.
According to a recent report from The Guardian, the Eagles have offered him a new four-year deal worth around £200,000 a week, but he is yet to sign a new deal.
While Chelsea can offer him new challenges, a move to Arsenal could tempt Zaha more as they can offer him Champions League football.
The Gunners are well-stocked in their attacking midfield areas but a player of Zaha’s quality and experience would definitely add more depth to the side.
Chelsea are likely to appoint Mauricio Pochettino as their next manager, and it will be interesting to see if he fancies Zaha as an option.
In 2022-23, Zaha has managed seven goals and two assists in the Premier League. While he remains an influential player, Palace would feel that they now have got players to replace him.
Zaha probably has a few good years left in him, but signing him comes with a bit of a risk. Wingers whose game is based on pace and trickery tend to decline after 30 when their speed starts to drop down. The same could happen with Zaha, and the signs are evident already.
Under Roy Hodgson, Zaha is now one of many at Palace and not indispensable. Thus, a move away from Selhurst Park in the summer cannot be completely ruled out, and he could be tempted to join Arsenal or Chelsea if they formalise their interest.
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