Crystal Palace boss Roy Hodgson admits Wilfried Zaha knows “where he wants to be” as transfer talk starts to ramp up again ahead of the summer transfer window.
The highly-rated Ivory Coast international believed a move away from Selhurst Park was on the cards in 2019, with Arsenal leading the chase for his signature, but no deal was done.
Zaha has remained loyal to the Eagles since then, registering another nine goals this season in what has been an injury-hit campaign, but he has made no secret of a desire to test himself at a higher level.
What has been said?
Hodgson concedes that a big career call for the 28-year-old forward is fast approaching, telling reporters of Zaha ahead of a Premier League clash with Everton on Monday: “He’s been very good.
“He’s missed more games through injury than in previous years which is a blow for us, but we’re hoping to keep him fit for the next nine.
“He seems to be pretty much clear at the moment as to what he wants to do and where he wants to be. We’re hoping to benefit from that in the next nine games.
“At the end of the season, we’ll see what happens then.”
Who has been linked with Zaha?Getty
Clubs from across Europe are said to have been shooting admiring glances in the direction of a man who secured a high-profile switch to Manchester United in 2013.
That move did not work out as planned, but Zaha is a more rounded and mature performer than he was when heading to Old Trafford.
Many consider him to be deserving of a Champions League stage, and those opportunities may soon be presented.
Borussia Dortmund have been linked with a raid on Palace for Zaha, while Monaco are also said to be keen.
Any number of Premier League sides could also decide to join a bidding war if one is sparked, with Everton reported to be one of the most likely to make a move.
The bigger picture
Palace have Zaha tied to a contract through to the summer of 2023, so are under no pressure to sell.
They will be able to demand the best possible price from any deal involving a prized asset, with there no chance of the Ivorian being allowed to leave on the cheap just because he would like to take on a new challenge.