Once again a starlet is shining brightly at Selhurst Park, so bright in fact that some of the big names in English football are taking notice. Wilfried Zaha has been instrumental in some of Crystal Palace’s games this season grabbing 4 goals in his last two games. Twice the young player of the year at Palace and last season’s league player of the year the future is looking good for Zaha.
Dougie Freedman, the manager of Palace, has told Talksport that: “When he’s ready and when I think he’s ready to go to the right club, I will tap Wilfried on the shoulder and tell him I can’t help him any longer”.
With this in mind Talksport seem to think that Tottenham or Liverpool are the most likely destination’s for the 19 year old but I believe that another team that has been linked with Zaha in the press may be a better option, Wigan Athletic. Because he’s a winger and from Crystal Palace the comparisons to Victor Moses will be endless and to be fair they have a similar style of play. This could be nurtured and then blossom under an intelligent manager like Roberto Martinez before going onto making even a bigger impression if his talent continues to grow.
Wigan is also less of a step up than either Tottenham or Liverpool as the quality of play is higher and the forgiveness for having a bad game is less compassionate. Liverpool are obviously in a transitional period and Rodgers is allowing the younger players a chance in order to create his own image of how the club show play. Zaha could do very well there but will find playing time minimised if he has a bad game which won’t be the same as at Wigan. There he will be able to play more regularly and get most of his bad attributes improved through experience.
Right now Tottenham have two of the quickest and best wingers in the land and with Andros Townsend coming through I would say that a trip to the north west may be best for Zaha.
For me either Liverpool or Wigan would be a good move for the Ivory Coast born starlet but in order to have a more steadied progression I would take the Victor Moses route and refine his skill at a club like Wigan before seeing if he feels he can cope at the top level of the English game.
I may be wrong and a move to Liverpool may be exactly what he needs as Wigan may already be too small for him. If so the combination of Sterling and Zaha on the wings could make many Liverpool fans drool along with England fans as Zaha has just been called up to the under-21 squad too.
Victor Moses surprised me at both Wigan and Chelsea as I thought it would take him longer than he did to adapt in each respective environment, so I wouldn’t be in a state of shock again if Zaha did too but a move to Wigan may well be the best bet for him at this crossroads of his career.